Do you run with your feet wide and mowing?  You're at high risk for popliteal tendinopathy

We analyze with Fisiorunning the tendon inflammation of the popliteal which causes an annoying pain in the knee of runners, often confused with other pathologies of the area, diverting and prolonging its healing

Dario Domeniconi

We have already seen the anatomy and how the popliteal muscle behind a runner’s knee works, now let’s examine its more frequent injury, differentiating it from other knee pathologies in athletes. In fact, the bandelletta syndrome, lateral meniscopathy and hamstring tendinosis can express themselves with symptoms similar to the popliteal tendinopathy.

How can the popliteal be injured while running?

His hyperactivity compared to other muscle groups it puts him at greater risk of injury. In fact theexcessive use of the muscle-tendon unit it would weaken it during the most demanding movements. These are thehyperextension of the knee with the tibia rotated internally (foot inwards); or with shear forces directed towards the outside of the knee with the tibia externally rotated. Furthermore thefoot over-pronation rotates the tibia externally and facilitates popliteal overload.

Popliteal tendinopathy: symptoms

The test that indicates, for the avoidance of doubt, a lesion of the popliteal is that of maneuver to remove the shoe with the other foot. When I rotate the foot inside to contralaterally remove the heel of the shoe from the heel I go to solicit the popliteal. In case of problems it will be impossible to do this and very painful behind the knee. During the biomechanical analysis of the Fisiorunning run we frequently notice, in the slow motion on the treadmill, the classic swath with open feet indicating popliteal dysfunction. Also present may be: acute posterolateral knee pain. At loading and climbing the stairs. Swelling and redness, sometimes edema and rarely bruising. Tendon noise (crepitus) during joint movement. Knee in flexion, with the tibia in lateral rotation and full extension almost impossible. Range of motion limited to 15-30 °. It should be considered that pure popliteal lesions are rare. They are usually associated with injuries of the cruciate, meniscal and colateral ligaments.

What causes popliteal tendinopathy?

Several scientific studies have demonstrated an increased electromyographic activation of the popliteal during sprints and downhill runs. The popliteal, together with the posterior cruciate, stabilizes the femur on the tibia in the stance phase. A shoe with a high drop urges the popliteal. As well as over pronation which acts superiorly on the rotation of the tibia. A incorrect biomechanics of the race could lead to compensation and overloading the popliteal. Increasing the risk of injury and the stop from activity. In addition to reducing performance. There muscle weakness and the poor dynamic stability (while running) increase the risk of injury.

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