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Discussion Starter #1
Hi there,

I am new to this forum and am hoping that someone will be able to shed some light on my "injury".

I have been training for the LA Marathon since September and have had problems with my left knee locking up. It gets so bad that I have to stop running and can only walk. There is no visual swelling, it just feels like someone has put the breaks on my knee and I cannot take one more "running" step. I was told that this could be an ITB problem.

Has anyone out there experienced this problem and if so, what did you do? I am feeling a little discouraged and really do not want to stop running, but when I am doing my long runs and my knee locks up on mile 8 I become very frustrated and just do not know what to do. It does not do it all of the time, only occasionally.

Any help or suggestions are very much appreciated!

Thanks!
 

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Hi Monica :) welcome to the Forum.

Hmm... could you be a bit more precise with the "locking up"? What exactly do you feel?
Does it hurt?
In which part of the knee does the locking seem to be happening?
Have you ever noticed a pattern? Like, for example, it happens when you run on hilly terrain or when you didn't warm up well... anything like that...
 

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My (limited) knowledge would suggest trying to make sure your stretch the ITB well before and after each run and see if that helps at all.

Also, with your running style, does your leg lock-out straight at all whilst you're running? If so this could well be a major contributor to the problem as your leg should always remain at least slightly bent... Just a thought anyway.

Welcome to the forum by the way :)
 

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It could be a problem with the VMO - muscle in your thigh. When you intially start to run your muscles aren't used to it and some muscles become more developed than others causing imbalances.

I would actually recommend going to see a sports physio, who will assess you and give you some exercises to do to address any imbalances.

Make sure you stretch all the muscles around your knee particularly the quads and hold your stretches for 30 seconds. There is a strengthening exercise that involves stepping up and down off a telephone directory but its a very controlled movement and its best if someone can show you how to do it.

The above exercise really helped me when I was having a problem with my left knee locking up particularly when going up hills.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Hi Fulmar,

Thank you for the reply...

I feel the pain on the outside of my left kneecap. It starts at the top pf the knee then travels down until it ends up on the side of the knee. Once it hits the outside of the knee, I can no longer run on it.

When this first started happening, it was after I ran down a hill. A couple of weeks ago it happened on the 11th mile of a very easy 1/2 marathon. There were not many hills, but when there were, I ran fast down them to pick up some lost time.

This last Saturday it was when I was catching up with my pace group after I had a quick break...


I am not sure what to do, but will probably go see a specialist. I have been cross training with cycling and the elliptical this week and am hoping to make it through my 17 mile run this weekend.

As always, any wisdom that can be passed on is greatly appreciated!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the info, very helpful!

I do plan to visit a sports physio. I am just hoping to get control of this before the LA Marathon in March.

Thanks again, and I will definitely try your suggestions!
 

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It does sound like ITBS - are you doing any stretches for your IT band? I suffered with this when I first took up running because I was running in the wrong type of shoes. It was very painful and I was off running for about 3 months but I'd let it get quite bad because I didn't realise I was injured. If you want to run your Marathon I'd try and see someone so hopefully you can nip it in the bud.
 

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I have had many different knee problems but nothing like that...
My only suggestion besides professional help is to do that thing of seeing if there is a pattern to the locking "situation".
 
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