Addressing knee pain: the basics

Addressing knee pain: the basics

Knee pain is one of our more common complaints.  Most of the time, there ends up being a trigger

point in one of the 4 quad muscles.  The specific  location of the pain on the knee determines what

muscle we look at first. The most common pain areas we see are pain on the outside of the knee,

which is related to the Vastus Lateralis muscle. Pain on the inside of the knee which is related to

trigger points in the Vastus Medialis muscle.

Photo Credit:  Travell and Simons.  Myofascial Pain and Dysfunction:

The Trigger Point Manual

There are a variety of tools you can use to address the trigger points in these muscles,

here are three pretty basic options:

The stick - good for remaining seated in a chair and apply pressure using your hands

to push down into the muscle belly as you roll the stick up and down the muscle.  

It is important to note though, that the cylindrical shape makes it hard to get into the

concave areas of the muscle.

A foam roller allows you to put a little more pressure on the spot because you will be

putting the weight of your body on the foam roll. You will have to be able to get on the

floor to effectively use the foam roller though

A lacrosse ball provides very specific attention to the trigger point and gets into the

concave areas of the quad, especially the vastus lateralis well.  You can use the

lacrosse ball seated but be prepared for the pain level to be higher than the stick.  


Stay tuned for a video on how to use each of these tools on your quad muscles

but in the meantime, feel free to test out and use whichever tool you find addresses

the issue best.  The goal is to search for the tender spot associated with the trigger

point in the muscle (usually located somewhere close to the X’s in the pictures above),

then applying as much pressure as you can tolerate, move back and forth across the

trigger point.   Be prepared to spend some time giving that trigger point some daily

attention in order to ensure that the pain goes, and stays away.  If you find this trigger

point keeps coming back, you will need to address some other issues like ankle mobility

or weak glute activation to eliminate the problem for good, as always we are happy to

help you with any of these issues at KORE Wellness!

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