I love running. Mainly due to the amazing sense of independence it gives me. I used to do a lot of running races and triathlons and was lucky to be able to run any distance without much effort. Unfortunately, I knew little about the great stress I was inflicting on my body with every step - we put six times our body weight through each foot during running.
Since 2006, my running distance had decreased from 21km to 8km due to reoccurring knee pain. Initially I tried to ignore it but my body was constantly letting me know that something was wrong. I wasn’t prepared to accept any possible health issue in my body, especially one that might affect my favourite exercise. Consequently, it took me four years to book the initial appointment with a knee surgeon. What was the diagnosis? A tear in the lateral meniscus was confirmed - very common in athletes, and possibly damage caused by the ‘natural’ degenerative process. Luckily, the latter issue wasn’t the case as my X-Ray was clear from any arthritis. I did nothing and eventually, I stopped running as the pain was sometimes excruciating.
Three years later, I made another trip to a knee surgeon who was very surprised that I hadn’t had surgery back then. This time, I allowed the second surgeon to book me in for arthroscopic surgery.
I’ve not had the surgery yet, and I’m confident that this common procedure (inside of the knee joint) will provide my knee with the lost stability, and the lateral meniscus will be able to function again as a shock absorber. This means I’ll certainly be able to get back to running without pain.
What does knee pain have to do with Pilates?
Well, this body conditioning exercise helps to maintain control and alignment of the knee and foot at the hip joint. In addition, the specific Pilates repertoire can help reduce any further damage and assist with a faster recovery after the surgery. The key objective of these Pilates exercises is strengthening of the quadriceps and developing stability of hip and knee joints and so, your lateral and medial meniscus are more stable.
Do you know somebody who’s going to have knee surgery?
Leave us a comment here. Alternatively, you can forward this post onto a relevant person and we’ll be happy to assist. Our group Pilates classes are run in GMG, Panaceum, Rehabilitation Centre in Geraldton.