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Quick Relief for Knee Pain

Updated on December 18, 2017
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Chris has spent most of the last 50 years participating in physical activities such as running, biking, hiking, swimming and weight lifting.

About This Article on Relieving Knee Pain

This article describes the cause of a certain kind of common knee pain. A video demonstrates three techniques to find quick relief from knee pain and inflammation.

Diagram of the Iliotibial Band in the Knee

The orange structure is the iliotibial band.
The orange structure is the iliotibial band. | Source

Treatments for Chronic Knee Pain

Knee pain can have several possible causes. One of these is associated with a structure in the leg known as the iliotibial band, or ITB. This connective tissue runs from the hip to just below the knee on the outside, or lateral part of the leg. There are two places where this band comes into contact with bone. Those are located at the hip and the knee. Sometimes the ITB rubs across the bone and becomes inflamed. This inflammation can cause hip and/or knee pain which can become severe enough to limit mobility.

There are treatments for this condition. If it is a fresh injury, use the "rice" treatment which consists of Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation. For ongoing symptoms, acupuncture and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs have been proven effective. Other possibilities are orthotics and surgery. It is rare that this condition can't be resolved with nonsurgical methods. There is another treatment that does not involve a visit to the doctor or even a single pill. Gentle stretching of the ilio-tibial band has been proven to relieve pain and inflammation.

I want to introduce you to three simple stretching techniques which may completely, although not permanently, relieve the pain. If these stretches work, they will need to be done regularly in order to keep the pain under control. In the following video, I demonstrate these three stretches. Since all three are done while either seated or lying on the floor, a yoga mat or some other padded surface will make them more comfortable. Also, a five foot length of nylon strap or rope with a loop in one end large enough to slip your foot into, will be needed.

Demonstration of Three Stretches to Relieve Knee Pain. Five Minute Video

How Stretching Relieves Knee Pain

This stretching temporarily lengthens the ITB, thereby reducing the rubbing of the band against bone, both at the hip and knee. The result is less irritation of the ITB and therefore a reduction of the pain.

It has been my experience that these stretches have produced immediate relief from knee pain, and I know others who have had the same relief in the hip.

How to Perform the Stretching Techniques

I want to emphasize four things which I alluded to in the video.

  1. When you do the first stretch involving the strap, place the strap just behind the ball of the foot so that when you pull, it turns the foot outwards.
  2. The stretching should be slow and gentle. Hold the stretch for two or three seconds and then release. Ten repetitions of this should be plenty for each stretching technique.
  3. These stretches can be used when pain begins, or can be used as a preventative measure.
  4. I share these things as suggestions based on my own experience. I am neither a doctor nor a physical therapist. If the pain persists, I suggest you see your doctor.

Relief From Knee Pain

I hope these techniques are helpful and that you find relief from any pain associated with the iliotibial band. If that is the case, take advantage of it and begin enjoying the activities that you may have set aside. If you do find relief, I hope you will come back and share that in the comment section of this article.


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