Rundown of Running Injuries – Part 1 – Patellofemoral Syndrome

As Physical Therapists we see many injuries caused by poor training modes and running form.  One blog does not allow enough attention span to explain the all the possible running injuries.  The most common running injury is patellofemoral syndrome and will be discussed below.   We will be presenting a Running Injury Prevention Seminar at the Olympic Club in San Francisco Wed July 14th at 6:30pm to outline all the common running injuries.  In addition the next few Blogs will cover the other common running injuries.   

Patellofemoral syndrome

What is it?    

Patellofemoral syndrome (PFS) is the most common running injury.  It is pain felt in the front of the knee caused by repetitive stress on the patella.  When the patella is aggravated, it becomes difficult to walk downstairs and/or hills, sit for prolonged periods of time, and squat.   

Weak gluts affecting knee mechanics


The knee is mainly controlled by the hip and foot, so the problem originates from the ground up, from the hip down, or both.  Recent studies have found that when there is weakness in the hip there are greater stresses occurring at the patella   

Why do runners get it?   

Running is exclusively a single leg activity, so it is important to have good stability to decrease the stress on the patella.  Weakness in the hips combined poor training practices and footwear can lead to undo stress on the patella.   

How do you prevent it?    


Here are two easy exercises that will help strengthen the hips   

— Single leg bridge   

— Side stepping with t-band   


2) Invest in good footwear.  Ask a physical therapist or find a reputable, local running shoe store with good knowledge to help you fit for the proper shoes.   

3) A lot of people take up running because you can just put on your shoes and step out the door.  However, for longevity and injury prevention, it’s important to ease into your mileage and incorporate a strength and conditioning program to maintain flexibility and muscle balance.   

Stay tuned for more Rundown of Running Injuries.   


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s