Cycling knee pain can literally put a stop to your normal training programme if not addressed properly. However, there are some simple steps that can help to solve the problem. The knee is quite a complex joint so even though knee pain is a common injury, treating it can vary depending on the person concerned. Also it’s the biggest joint in the body which means as a cyclist it should be your top priority to minimize any damage that might occur to the knee.
It goes without saying that if you are serious about cycling you will need proper equipment. Factors that need considering is whether the bike is well suited to your body and that you are well positioned on the bike. In reality you and the bike need to move in harmony because if there is any misalignment, then your knee joints will suffer. Try adjusting your seat and saddle position to get the correct height and avoid placing unnecessary stress on your joints.
A lot of people start cycling in order to get fit and realize that once they are experiencing knee pain their muscles are actually not ready. Usually the problem lies in the strength of the quadriceps and hamstrings when cycling. These two muscles need to be strong enough to carry one another so that the knee cap supports the knee effectively. If this is not treated then your cartilage can start degrading and lead to more serious problems. Before you even get on a bike you must prepare for your body especially your legs for the repetitive cycling motion they will perform.
The most common cause of knee pain is caused by too much stress on the knee because of increased mileage and intensity of the exercise. A lot of knee pain can be avoided if cyclists increase their training intensity gradually so that the body and joints get a chance to adjust to the new workout. Cycle according to your own fitness level and don’t overdo it because the body needs time to gain all the strength needed to cycle effectively. Another related mistake that cyclist do is over stressing their legs by using a gear that is too high. The key is to gradually buildup to a higher gear over time.
Cycling knee pain can also be caused by an incorrect alignment of shoe cleats which should be adjusted according to the natural angle of your feet. When riding you need to get as much of a natural movement as you would when walking and having your cleats adjusted to your own natural walking angle prevents knee pain.
It is very important for cyclist to adopt a holistic approach when they are cycling. Your diet in between training sessions is just as important as the muscle strengthening exercises. Proper nutrition and hydration is essential for maintaining healthy muscles and joints. Problems will not present themselves as much if your body’s healing systems are working properly. Along with proper shoes and knee braces you can help alleviate a painful knee. Message and hot therapy is also recommended as part of the whole holistic approach. Knee pain affecting a major joint such as a knee will not go away overnight so take the time needed for your body to heal.
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