knee pain normal?

Hi folks,

I've decided to take up running more seriously as work commitments have meant I've had to take a break from playing rugby. I'm relatively fit and am about to start a 16 week training plan to hopefully get close to a 1.30 half marathon in march.

I've read alot about increacing milage slowly to avoid injury. I'm finding that after a long run my left knee is painful especially walking up and down stairs for the rest of the day. This passes and I'm ready to run the day after pain free.

My question is, how much discomfort is normal after a long run? Is this expected? Don't want to get injured before I really start. Currently on about 20 miles a week.



  • I should add that this is after gunning the downhills and not usually a problem on flat runs.

  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    Sounds like it could be ITBS.

    It's worth googling it to see if A it might be what you have

    And B there should be plenty of info on stretches to do and ways to prevent it.

    Using a foam roller has helped for me but you really need to find out what is causing it in the first place which could be a number of things.
  • As an opinion... it isn't normal to have that pain - you do have a niggly injury.  But it's probably minor and not too unusual either - the sort of thing that most runners need to manage from time to time.

    You know that 'gunning downhills' is not good for anyone's knees.  My guess is that you can keep on running, but should definitely be looking to see improvements in the knee.  For a start, take all downhills very gently, and hopefully you'll give your body time to repair itself and the problem disappear in a couple of weeks.


    EDIT... just saw Millsy's comment.  I'd not considered ITBS.  It definitely could be (you decide after Googling the symptoms), in which case there are specific things you can/should  do, as he says. .. but it definitely might be runner's knee or some other little niggle that will disappear with a bit of rest.

  • If you are a big heavy rugby guy then there is probably a lot of impact pressure on that knee and even more so when you come downhill. I would try to get some off road runs in and avoid any steep downhills. And run the downhills easy. 

  • Just noticed we have a runnin man and now a Very confusing

  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    I just noticed that. Very confusing.

    There is a bit of an art to running downhill without coming down too hard on your knees and feeling like you are putting the brakes on with every step.

    As Sussex says try and slow down if you are currently running them fast and then try to practice on a grass slope at going downhill without putting the brakes on every step. There is a bit of an art to it.
  • Thanks for the replies folks. All valid points. I am fairly big so I guess that doesnt help. The first couple of weeks of my training plan suggest off road running possibly due to my size (6ft 7 but not overweight 15stoneish) will check out ITBS. The pain is at the top of my kneecap but only hurts walking up and down stairs. Full squats/walking etc don't hurst at all.

    Maybe I should change my username haha.... and Big Luffy is born.

  • RM - doesn't sound like ITB to me, you have pain at he top of the kneecap where ITB the pain would be in the side of the knee (I've been suffering with it for 9 months now). It could be runners knee - have a look at this website as it covers all knee injuries and gives you exercises and stretches to o -

  • Thats great. Thanks.

  • I got some strengthening exercises for my pain. From memory they involved standing against a wall and lifting your leg out straight. As the legs got stronger the pain subsided.

    Worth a google maybe.

  • Thanks for the advice. I'm going to look into some strengthening excercises and take the downhills easy. Ive changed to a midfoot strike which has made the world of difference to my speed but it does mean I run downhill too fast to avoid landing on my heels.

  • Strengthening exercises is a great idea. Try some side leg lifts. 

  • Just a bit of feedback to help anyone who might be experiencing the same problem. I think I may have bruised my knee by overrunning the downhills in fairly soft shoes. I've done about 40 easyish miles since being very timid on the downhills and after my 7 miler this morning I don't have any pain on the stairs at all. Fingers crossed it won't come back. Thanks again for the replies.


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