Runners knee which shouldn’t be confused with Jumpers knee is an overuse injury of the outer part of the knee whereas Jumpers Knee affects mostly the Patella Tendon. Runners knee also known as Ilio Tibial Band Friction Syndrome mainly affects runners and cyclists. In cyclists it is the top cycling injury making up 25% of all cycling injuries. In runners it is thought to affect up to 10% of all professional runners.
Symptoms of Runners knee often include;
- Knee pain on the out part of the knee this pain may also resonate up into the thigh muscles and down into the shins.
- Pain will usually be worse when bending and putting pressure on the knees for instance in running or cycling.
- Inflammation may also be found around the knee joint as well.
The likelihood of overusing and therefore inflaming the lio Tibial Band can be increased if the band is tight when bending the knee. Runners knee is caused as the Ilio Tibial Band which connects the knee to the hip rubs and creates friction against the Lateral Epicondyle as you bend your knee and the Ilio Tibial Band which is in front of the Lateral Epicondyle when your leg is not bent then goes behind the Lateral Epicondyle, over usage of the knee through constant bending of the knee can cause this friction that is created through this action to cause inflammation.
Leg length discrepancy have been linked to Runners knee. Leg legnth discrepancy place more stress and tightness on the ligaments and tendons in knee and thigh than usual on the longer leg.
Your body has a defence through the Bursa sac located on your thigh to help prevent inflammation through providing fluid to both the lio Tibial Band and the Lateral Epicondyle keeping the tissues in your knees subtle and lubricated helping to prevent friction. However the Bursa’s ability to do this can also be compromised through constant bending of the knee if it becomes impinged between the lio Tibial Band and the Lateral Epicondyle.
Treatment may involve
- Wearing ice packs to bring down inflammation and to promote blood flow to the region.
- Physiotherapy helping to realign and correct alignment and bio mechanical issues that maybe causing the Jumpers knee to develop.
- Physiotherpahy may include knee and leg stretches, aids such as insoles, heel lifts (for correcting leg length discrepancies) and knee straps and supports may also be worn to help correct and realign the knee.
Correcting Biomechnical and postural imbalances can help to prevent runners knee as imbalances can affect things such as tightness of the Ilio Tibial Band which can contribute to extra strain on the and friction. Wearing a knee support can help to correct these imbalances and restore proper functionality of the knee.
Compression found in the knee support can also help to relive the painful symptoms too. Over pronation can also cause tightness of the leg tendons and has been linked to runners knee. Wearing a pair of running insoles that can help to correct pronation can really help.
Mobility and flexibility in the knees can be improved upon through daily knee stretches. Not only that but doing simple stretches each day can also help you to correct form and prevent tightness and strain on the knees which can help to prevent injury.
Immobility, pain and stiffness of the knees may be down to several reason for instance muscles and bio mechanical imbalances , tightness and irritation of the tendons found in your knees which have all been linked to poor posture, a whole host of over-use injuries and an increased chance of twisting and damaging the ligaments in the knees and legs. All of these things can affect your lifestyle and health as a result.
Stretching exercises can help bring back mobility to your knees and help them to function correctly and safely!
Balance within our knees is important, your knee joints are complex hinges that need to strike a balance otherwise imbalances can result in ligament tightness, sprains and damage.
Exercise and stretches are often used with helping the recovery of a wide variety of injuries such as knee osteoarthritis to help better control inflammation and minimise tightness around the knee that can worsen arthritis pain.
Jumpers knee can either come in two different forms either Patella Tendinitis which is inflammation of the tendon through over usage or Patella Tendinopathy which is the gradual degeneration of the Patella Tendon within the knee through overuse and strain of the Patella Tendon resulting in the Patella Tendon beginning to start to wear away with small microscopic damage developing.
Jumpers knee is named as such due to the high number of athletic jumpers that suffer from it. Jumpers are more susceptible to developing this injury as jumping places a huge level of stress and pressure on the knee when the jumper springs up off the ground into the air and when landing the sudden shock can also cause further wear and tear which overtime wears away the Patella Tendon.
Sport and over usage of the knee isn’t all to blame for Patella Tendinitis and Tendinopathy as ageing can contribute to the weakening and the degeneration of the tendon this is due partly because as we age our ability to repair and replace damaged tissues cells is reduced. This can also affect the elasticity and strength in your tendon causing it to be more susceptible to damage.
- Inflammation as well as swelling found around the knee joint
- Pain which gets worse when bending and using the knee
- The Patella Tendon feels sensitive
- Stiffness and lack of mobility in the knee and leg
Jumpers Knee can often get worse that is why it is best to tackle the underlining cause as soon as possible.
If the knee is subjected to continuous excessive usage this can cause worsening of the damage to the tendon, as the damage continues and the tendon becomes weaker and weaker the symptoms will get worse too. Jumpers Knee is therefore very common in sport due to the high levels of strain and usage athletes put the knee under.
Continuous strain and usage of the knee can cause microscopic damage as well as inflammation of the patella tendon thus it is very important that your knees are sufficiently warmed up before exercise in order to reduce strain and damage to the knee and promote sufficient blood flow to the area reducing damage.
-Reducing the stress and shock on the patella tendon is a really good idea which can be achieved by wearing shock absorbing insoles
Maintaining good form whilst running or jumping can help limit possible injuries which can cause damage to the tendon.
It is always advised to let your knees fully recover after sustaining an injury to them especially when the injury involves damage to a tendon. Tendons often take a lot longer to fully heal than other parts of the body. Injury and damage to a tendon can also negatively affect its characteristics and bio mechanics which may take a while to restore.
If you go back to using your knees as normal after sustaining jumpers knee you run the risk of further damage to the tendon.
Fractures or breaks to the lower leg Fibula bone (the Fibula bone is found on the outer most part of your lower leg) can result from sudden traumas, falls or even through overuse. Symptoms of a broken or fractured Fibula bone often include;
- Pain on the damaged part of the leg
Protruding bones from a break may result in deformity of the lower leg. If you suspect that you have indeed broken your leg it is highly recommended that you see a doctor as soon as possible.
In sport such as football it is fairly common to see instances of leg breaking on the field and this is due commonly to twisting of the leg whilst the foot is fixed to the ground or from a collision with another player. It is therefore highly recommend to take precautions when you are playing sports like football, precautions such as wearing shin guards to protect your Fibula bones from traumas, also stretching fully the feet, knees and legs before a game to improve Proprioception in your muscles helping to give you better muscle activation and awareness which can help you know where your legs are moving helping you to avoid awkward movement which may result in a compromising twist or turn that could potentially damage or break your bones.
With a closed fracture where bone fragments are quite close together an orthopaedic doctor will usually look to move the bones fragments closely together and then fix a plater cast around the broken leg so that your leg can connect the two bone fragments together and heal by itself. A plaster cast is needed to keep the bones in place and prevent deformity. The estimated time the plaster cast stays on for a broken leg such as this usually ranges from 13-16 weeks. However even after the cast has been removed pain may still be present and the leg muscles will have been weakened both by the injury and inactivity of the muscle groups of the leg causing instability in the leg and knees. Physiotherapy is therefore recommended to help re-strengthen the lower legs. Physiotherapy is also recommended to help correct mechanical, muscle and postural imbalances that may have resulted from the injury.
Resistance bands are excellent for helping you to keep your other unaffected muscles groups active and strong whilst you recover and also help to build fitness, balance and strength in your weakened lower leg once your broken leg has healed.
Happy new year to everyone, we hope you are as excited about the new year as we are and this is the first blog post of the new year for Nuova Health! In this post we will briefly update you on the latest new product ranges to arrive at Nuova Health for this year.
For 2014 we will slowly bring in our new supports range of products. As you could see last year we brought in the magnetic back support to aid posture correction but now this will be joined by our knee support range. The knee supports have been brought in just in time for the winter as it is during the cold season that the knees become more painful if you have a knee condition and so these supports are designed so you can still live an active life but relieve some of the pain during these winter months. We will be looking to expand our supports range in the future so keep checking back.
Also as it is new year many of our customers will be following new years resolutions and the most popular one for many is the desire to get fit. Nuova Health have thus introduced a new range of resistance band products so you can gently work your muscles whilst following pilates or yoga style workout routines. These resistance bands are designed to be portable and easy to use, so you can workout anywhere you want to. No more expensive gym fees either.
You can look forward to further blog posts in the future where we detail different types of Yoga and Pilates exercises so you can gain the most from your resistance bands.
Whatever your goals are for the new year, lets hope that yours will be a healthy new year for you.
– The team at NuovaHealth.co.uk
Height is a more important aspect in our lives than we may first think. Height can influence other people’s first impression of you; therefore you will have far greater chances of success in job interviews or anywhere else where first impressions are important if you are a little bit taller. Now it may sound impossible at first that you can actually increase your height but you can and this can be done quite easily too. Often when you think of increasing your height you will usually think of growing taller by eating a protein rich diet to give your body what it needs to grow but this is all well and good for the people who are still growing but what about getting taller when you have stopped growing what then? Surely it is impossible right? Wrong. You can still increase your height by stretching and wearing some of our insoles will help you do just that. Firstly let me mention about stretching exercises. Stretching exercises are really great for helping you get good posture and maintain it. With good posture your spine and joints will be under less pressure which will help you better avoid joint and bone problems and conditions like arthritis or stress fractures. From stretching exercises you can expect to gain a couple inches overtime if you keep up the stretches each day and maintain good posture, as stretching exercises work by strengthening the muscles that support the joints and spinal vertebra meaning your joints and spine will be less compact together from the effect that gravity has on our bodies (overtime as we get older and our muscles and joints get weaker the effect that gravity has on us is far greater as our bodies are weaker than they used to be to help combat the effects).
Stretching exercises will make you taller but will take a lot of commitment and time. Every day you must keep up doing the stretching exercises and be aware of your posture constantly making sure you do not slouch or hunch. However what if you want height right now? Or you don’t have the time to do stretching exercises each day or you have excellent posture and want even more height? Some shoe lift insoles are just what you need then! Shoe lifts will give you the extra height from working by elevating your heels secretly and because shoe lifts are secret means people wear them and others have no idea that they are wearing shoe lifts at all that is pretty cool if you ask me. Shoe lifts give people who have either stopped growing or people who want to be taller right now a chance to be the height they want whenever they feel like it. Simple and easy to put in your shoes being taller has never been so easy and because nobody will ever see the insoles you have no awkward moment where people work out your wearing them which cannot be said for those who wear elevator shoes as with elevator shoes it is pretty obvious with the tall heel and all.
Doing the right stretching exercises (like Yoga or Pilates) and with the added and instant height that you are able to get from wearing shoe lifts will no doubt help you feel much more confident in yourself and gain the edge needed to succeed in life and business.
There are loads of reasons why you might want to be taller, being taller will surely help boost your confidence, improve your social life and job prospects all in one! So it’s up to you do you want this?
The right nutrition via eating a balanced diet is very important for development and growth. Not having the right nutrition in other words being deficient in certain vitamins and minerals (malnourished) can in fact stunt your growth. Studies of western countries average population height compared to that of countries with poor diet from either economic factors or environmental factors shows a big correlation of how what you eat can affect your height. Take for example people living in country’s struck by famine; the populations height will be considerably smaller to that of a western affluent country of which has an abundance of food, along with proper education of healthy living and sports centres or gyms to help people stay healthy.
Calcium and phosphorus are minerals that contribute to good bone health and are needed if you want to grow taller also these minerals are needed as being deficient in them at a young age can have effects like osteoporosis when you’re older.
Nutrition is fundamental for growth; essential amino acids are needed for growth and repair of cells in your body. Essential amino acids are called “essential” because of the fact that you’re body does not create them and so they can only be obtained through eating certain foods.
It isn’t just nutrition that help you get taller but also the right posture too. The right posture is key! Slouching and hunching your back will weaken the spine and make you look smaller. With a weakened spine and muscles around the spine the effect of gravity will more easily take a toll by compressing the body together.
There is something you can do however to get better posture! Stretching exercises can be done (for example Pilates and Yoga) by stretching out the spine you in effect strengthen the spine and muscles making it much harder for gravity to compress you together and thus making you taller; not only do stretching exercises help to improve posture but the space between the joints and vertebrae in your spine can also widen (because this gap is made up of cartilage that can change shape). By increasing the gap between the bones you can gain a bit of height and better posture.
But if this sound like a lot of hard work to you then you can try a pair of our shoe lifts too instantly gain height. OR you could even try out wearing our shoe lifts and doing stretching exercises for even better results.
Over and under pronation can be corrected by orthotics… But what exactly is meant by pronation of the foot and how does it over or under pronate and does it even matter? This article aims to address these issues.
Pronation is the inward “roll” of your foot whilst you run or walk. In other terms pronation is the amount of inward roll that occurs when your foot pushes off after each step.
Normal or neutral pronation is preferred and in order to check if you have normal pronation one of the biggest clues is your arch (on the sole of your foot) if you have a normal arch then there is a big chance you have normal pronation (sometimes not always the case).
If you have got normal pronation of the foot then you may run best in well supported orthotics.
Over and under pronation of the feet can lead to pain in the foot region and the heel as well as site wide inflammation. People who have got flat feet tend to be the ones with over pronation in the feet and are best suited to insoles or shoes that help support the arch of the foot i.e. arch support insoles. In contrast to this people who have not got flat feet but the very opposite with high arches are the ones that tend to suffer from under pronation. People who suffer from under pronation are best to buy some shoes or insoles that help to support the arch and foot in a more natural position.
Causes of over and under pronation
Scientists have come up with many explanation to the causes of over pronation however scientist have yet to come to any conclusions as to what is exactly to blame. Some reasons that scientist and orthopaedics have come up with include:
– Leg length discrepancy’s (unequal length of the leg).
This can be corrected using heel lifts to correct the difference in leg lengths.
– Weakening or tightening of the muscles surrounding the arch of the foot.
This can be treated by stretching and strengthening the muscles around the arch of the foot.
– Poorly fitting shoes that do not give adequate support and psotions the foot in unnatural postions where over time can cuase damage.
– Ageing can cause weakening of the tissues that support the arch
– Obesity, being overweight can cause more pressure on the arch of the foot.
Arch support insoles can be worn to help too support the plantar fascia and the arch of the foot thus reducing over or under pronation of the foot. The arch support corrects and supports the natural arch in the foot reducing pain and easing inflammation.
How to prevent and ease pain whilst running
If you suffer foot cramps, sudden jolts and pain whilst running then there are things you can do to try to reduce this. For instance you can wear orthotic insoles and improve your running technique. By just doing these two things you can vastly reduce the discomfort and pain while you run. So how do you improve your running technique and how can orthotic insoles help?
Let me first tell you about how improving your running technique will help. If you have a bad running technique then this can cause unnecessary force and jolts when your feet hit the ground, not only that, if when you run the impacts of hitting the ground with your feet becomes too powerful then this can affect your run. There are a few ways you can improve your run and stop this from happening; try to run softer and be lighter on your feet whilst running.
Here are a few things that will help you run better and improve your technique to reduce unnecessary strain, discomfort and more importantly injury.
Good posture is key to running as slouching or having a hunched back can cause back pain and may even cause strain on the leg muscles. Standing upright and straight will help you breathe more openly and freely meaning more oxygen will be able to be delivered to your cells and reduce the build-up of lactic acid. Good posture includes keeping your head up looking forward at all times as looking down will cause strain on your neck muscles.
A trick many people use to improve posture is imaging that a string is tied on the top of their head and they are being pulled upwards kind of like a puppet.
When your feet hit the ground
Many pro runners will land on their forefoot instead of their heel when running; this is because landing on the forefoot there is a less likely chance of injury and not only that it helps improve speed while running. Some people naturally run like this whereas other will run on their heel, if you run on your heel it is best to slowly start running on the forefoot as quickly changing running style can cause injury. Running shoes are available to help people slowly change running styles from heel to forefoot.
Over striding is where your foot lands in front of the knee and this isn’t very good for your joints! It is not good because when your feet lands in front of the knee then it is out of your centre of gravity and this can cause injury, a better way of running would be to instead run so that the foot lands under the knee instead. Something that I mentioned above is too run light on your feet, do not hit the ground with force and the aim is to make your feet spend as little as possible time on the ground as you can.
How your arms move is just as important as how your legs move. It helps improve not only speed but balance and rhythm as well.
You must relax your shoulders as best you can as tension can cause pain and discomfort in the shoulders while running plus it can limit the movement in the arms. You elbow should be bent at around a 90 degree angle just like all the pro runners. Another thing to keep in mind is that you should move your arm with the shoulders and not your forearms.
Breathing is very important whilst you run as being out of breathe while running won’t get you very far. Breathing more effectively can help you run faster and for longer. Breathing will also reduce the amount of lactic acid in your body when you cells become starved of oxygen. To improve your breathing remember to inhale via your nose and exhale from your mouth. Breathe with the diaphragm and always breathe deeply and openly.
Wearing orthotic insoles
Even the pro runners wear running orthotics when they run (and when they are not running). Running insoles will help to cushion your feet, reduce unnecessary shocks that can cause weakening in your tissues and even cause arthritis overtime. By spreading pressure that could build up so that it is evenly spread throughout the foot and heel it means that this build-up of pressure cannot cause damage, discomfort or pain.
Insoles also help to reduce the risk of getting such problems as plantar fasciitis as your plantar fascia will be better supported. Because the insoles help to reduce sudden jolts in your legs because they act as a shock absorber it reduces strain and fatigue that can occur in your joint meaning you can run faster for longer.
Here are some really great and hopefully helpful running tips for you to try out for yourself.
Good form is the most important thing when running; even if you aren’t trying to run faster having good running form is needed to prevent injury. For good running form you need to have tall posture as though a string is pulling the top of your head upwards but keeping your upper-body relaxed too whilst you run. Good form means the middle of your foot when striking the ground be positioned just under your hips making sure that your arms don’t swing side to side but back and forth as you run.. This is how your running form should be! If you are not used to running like this it may feel unnatural to begin with but your body will soon get used to it and you will be running in good form in no time and much faster too!
Time yourself and make sure you keep count of how many strides you take when you run. A study has shown that the best runners who run the most efficiently and quickest are those who take 180 strides a minute. The trick is not to take long strides and to keep your feet close to the ground as you run. Quick and simple steps!
High intensity cardio is important and won’t take up a lot of your time. High intensity exercises like cycling as fast as you can for a minute or so is a really effective way to build strength and get the heart beating fast. High intensity exercises are done by all the major runners to improve their speed.
Treadmills help you to slowly build your speed from a steady walking pace to a full on sprint, treadmills are a great piece of equipment for runners letting the runner be in charge by setting the pace and even the incline.
Mix up your pace. Sprint for one minute jog the next then when you get used to jogging quickly sprint again and try to catch your body off guard. Changing pace like this is known as “fartleks” (Swedish) and helps to build endurance and stamina and a great cardio workout that keeps your body guessing!
Lightweight running shoes and insoles, now you can super lightweight running footwear that helps by reducing weight from the foot when you run but will still give you that arch support and shock absorption whilst you run!
Breathe faster and more effectively! Breathing is important it give oxygen to your cells helping them to create energy and prevent the build-up of painful lactic acid.
Extra resistance to build up running strength. To build up the muscles used to run you need to push them with added resistance; there are a number of ways to do this for example running with a weighted backpack or even you can buy running parachutes that have been made to create wind resistance behind you making running a lot harder but will build up your strength in your muscles so when you run without the extra resistance it will be easier and you will be much faster. Hill running also builds strength in your running muscles as the steep incline creates a type of resistance that must be overcome.
Core muscle workouts can be a great way to run faster; use sit-ups and press ups which develop the core muscles. Core muscle workouts should be done each day but don’t take up that much time 10 minutes at most!
If you want to become a good runner then we recommend a good night sleep and rest. If you over work your muscles then they may become exhausted and your body needs time to recover and repair itself that is why rest is important!
Yoga does a lot of things (like helping you grow taller) among those things that yoga will help with is to increase flexibility loosening the joints will help you feel more relaxed and because yoga helps with posture too you will have better form whilst running.