My Knee Hurts: Quadriceps a Culprit!
My Knee Hurts is site to help educate vistors, you, to better understand your body’s natural mechanics in simple terms. To give your body back its power of working towards a pain-free life functionally. The muscles that surround the knee are; Vastus Lateralis, Rectus Femorus, Vastus Medialis and Satorius are the 4 major muscles of the thigh that make up the Quadriceps. Lay your hand across, right above the kneecap, your thumb marks the spot of a significant pain culprit!
Two of these muscles, Vastus Medialis and Sartorius are major knee pain culprits that can stem from knots in this area of the quadriceps. Seen here in the diagram (right), where these two muscles meet (lower inner portion of leg/knee area) is where deep knots can form due to a tight IT Band (Iliotibial Band) on the opposite side of the leg. As in other articles on My Knee Hurts, I explain what the IT Band is. From this we learn that the It Band is the fascia that runs along the outside of the leg, attaching at the outer part of the hip and running down to its other insertion part of the outer part of the knee. IT injuries being more commonly associated with runners, fact is everyone has a tight IT Band. The more active you are, the more you can feel it and fix it. Dangerous for those inactive who wont foam roll and wind up with an injured knee by simply walking.
Stress, tension and tightness in the IT Band causes the kneecap to be pulled outward causing pain anywhere from the points of insertion, kneecap, inside of the knee and up into the inner thigh. Many people may know about the IT Band, however what an unattended IT Band can cause is not commonly known. Fascia runs all over the body, holding your muscles in place. Daily movement causes your body to naturally un-align. Fascia, then holds this un-alignment and causes pain, any where in the body, especially all over your legs and back.
Taking the foam roll to your inner thigh and atop the quads is needed. A focus on the lower portion of the inner thigh where the Vastus Medialis and Sartorius meet is crucial. A deep knot forms here that you will not feel unless you roll it. Bruising occurring from foam rolling is normal and welcomed as that is a sign the tension in the leg is exploading, so to speak. To give a better understanding of how deep this knot can be, on this specific section a bruise may not occur because the knot is so deeply embedded. Where in which this knot forms causes kneecap pain, inner and outer knee pain, and an even tighter IT Band. (It can also cause hip pain, a pain unattended properly will travel.)
If you have been saying “my knee hurts,” I strongly suggest you begin a foam rolling remin. If you are foam rolling and still saying my knee hurts, I advise you to start rolling the inner thigh, atop the quads and focus on the Vastus Medialis and Sartorius. Again, it will be painful, probably moreso than your IT Band. Remember, if you have this knot its coming from the other side of the leg, so rolling it will be painful as you are releasing a chain of a problem, not just one area, in essence.