Mountain Biking Warrior – Sore Knee
Dear Doctor Brett:
I just returned from a weekend of mountain biking in the High Sierras. I am a weekend rider and put on about 30 miles in a weekend with my riding buddies. I now have excruciating pain on the outside of my left knee and can hardly walk. I haven’t fallen or injured my knee so what can be causing this? Sincerely, Sore in the Sierras
Dear Sore Knee:
I suggest that you get a foam roller for your home care arsenal. Mine greets me after every ride with welcome pain relief. A 3 foot long by 6 inch diameter piece of foam you literally lie over and roll on the outside of your leg. A likely cause of your pain is from a tight IT Band. This is the tendon that runs on the outside of your leg and connects the hip to the lower leg. The hunched forward and seated position on the bike along with repetitive motion is a recipe for IT Band tendonitis. Try stretching the outside of your leg while standing and leaning to the side. Hold all stretches for 20-30 seconds when you are warm. Ice for 20 minutes after your rides. Have your bike fit checked by a qualified professional. One more thing, make sure your cycling shoes support your feet correctly which may include orthotics to support your arches. If this doesn’t help, see your sports physician or therapist.