How To Heal A Runner’s Knee?

Holding a kneeI think I mentioned somewhere that I suffer from a runner’s knee, also called patella femoral pain syndrome (pfps for short). (I I haven’t actually run for ages.)

My left knee is perhaps the biggest factor preventing me from working out and losing weight at the moment. For a long time I have been at a loss what to do with my knee, but at the moment I’m cautiously optimistic I’m not going to suffer from runner’s knee for the rest of my life.

Because my insurance does not cover physical therapy, I decided I’m going to figure out how to heal runner’s knee on my own (that happened last fall). I surfed the internet, read articles, browsed anatomy pictures and searched Youtube for exercises I could do to rehabilitate my knee. I devised my own rehabilitation program which I did more or less dutifully for a couple of months.

I was in for a big disappointment when I bought an expensive fitness program in March which I planned to use to get back in shape.  I wasn’t able to do most of the movements without aggravating the pain in my left patella. So I gave up, got mad, depressed and eventually stopped exercising completely. Naturally, I put on more weight. 🙂


By chance I found and purchased an exercise program for treating pfps devised by Bart Anderson. I have now done the program for about 2,5 months (I had a three week break in the middle) and I’m finally seeing some progress. In the last few weeks I have been able to do two long Nordic walks a week! If everything goes well, in a few weeks I’m going to give a second try to that fitness program I bought in March.

According to conventional wisdom, the best treatment for patella femoral pain syndrome is to strengthen weak quadriceps muscles in the front of the thigh.

According to Bart Anderson, pfps is caused by problems with the hips. Instead of focusing on quadriceps muscles, you should focus your efforts on improving the motor control of your hips, strengthening weak muscles like gluteus medius and stretching tight muscles (often hamstrings). So no wonder why my leg lifts produced no results!


The pain in my left knee is definitely not gone yet, but now I’m at least able to see light at the end of the tunnel (I know what you are thinking!).  If I’m lucky, I’m able to start that fitness program soon, even though I probably have to adapt the movements to be able to follow the program at all.

If you suffer from knee problems yourself, I suggest you check Bart Anderson’s guide on how to heal runner’s knee yourself.



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P.S. You may also want to check my continuation post How To Heal A Runner’s Knee.