Marathon runner healed his knee injury with Pilates

What can get you in the bad books of a runner? Telling them to stop running. Those who run regularly swear by the thrill of the sport. Nothing deters them from their favourite mental and physical activity, not even injuries. However, this can be detrimental to the sustainability of their runs in the long term. One such passionate runner is our client at the Tardeo branch of Moushu’s Pilates. Read on to know how he ignored his body’s signals, worsening the injury and how he recovered from his runner’s knee injury with rehab Pilates.

Meniscal tear: a running injury

The MRI showed that he had a partial grade 3 complex tear of the posterior horn, indenting into the body of the medial meniscus. This injury was on the left knee, the same side as that of the original back pain. He had to undergo an arthroscopic repair surgery to repair the meniscus. Post the surgery and physiotherapy, Harmohan was eager to get back to his running. For that he chose Pilates.

Rehab Pilates for Knee

Based on his history, we realized that the injury in the knee had occurred as a result of a weak core. The lower back pain had been the first indication of weakness in the core. It was not being able to support the full weight of the body and was causing pain in the back. Hence, the load had transferred to the knee, leading to the injury by the impact of running.

Clam: This helps in strengthening the glutes and with the alignment of the hip, knee, and ankle. Once he had undergone rehab, a theraband was added for a challenge.

Criss-cross: Runners need to strengthen their slings and especially the obliques. Criss-cross mimics the movement of running albeit in supine and helps strengthen the Anterior and Posterior oblique slings.

Leg pull in prone: This exercise which is a preparatory exercise for the plank, stabilises the core. Once his strength increased, we added shoulder taps for an added challenge.

Foot work: Special emphasis was placed on the foot work to strengthen the quads and calves, and to aid ankle mobility.

Harmohan is now back to running. “Pilates has contributed to my road to recovery – I have so much better awareness of my running form. Now there is a voice in my head which always tells me to keep my ribs down and to keep my belt muscles active, which engages the core better and that is helping me a lot.”

How runners can prevent injuries

The first step in preventing injuries is accepting the importance of rest and recovery. Second, is recognizing one’s weaknesses. When you know where your Achilles heel (or in this case, knee) lies, only then you can work on strengthening it.

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