Your knee is a very complicated joint, using bone, cartilage, tendons, and ligaments to help you move throughout your day. If you’re experiencing back of knee pain or knee pain when bending, there are several potential reasons why. Let’s take a look at some of the most common reasons for pain behind the knee and how to find relief with IMPACT Physical Therapy.
Why Do I Have Knee Pain When Bending?
Because your knees are such hard-working joints, any one of their interworking parts can cause severe knee pain when out of alignment. Specifically for back of knee pain, there are several common culprits, including:
Leg cramps: While your knee is not a muscle, your calf and thigh muscles flank each side. If you’re feeling a contraction or spasm pain behind your knee, it may not be your knee at all but the surrounding muscles experiencing a cramp. Leg cramps can cause muscles to be sore for a few hours after the fact.
Jumper’s knee: Common in athletes who frequently jump or change direction (such as basketball), jumper’s knee is a tendon injury that causes weakness, stiffness, or knee pain when bending. This condition is also referred to as patella tendonitis.
Hamstring injuries: Your hamstrings run down the back of your thighs, and are responsible for helping your knee bend. If the muscle is stretched too far it could become strained or torn, resulting in back of knee pain.
Baker’s cyst: Your knees use synovial fluid to keep everything lubricated, but an excess of fluid can form into a cyst. If the cyst bursts, it can cause a sharp pain and create temporary knee pain when bending.
Calf strain: Calf muscles help you bend your knees and point your toes, but should they become strained after running or jumping, you could experience back of knee pain.
Arthritis: Arthritis causes joints to slowly wear away and can be found throughout the body, including your knees. As cartilage cushioning breaks down, your knee joint will have more trouble moving properly.
Pain Behind Knee Treatment
The first step in finding knee pain treatment is to have your symptoms evaluated by a physician. Because there are so many different causes of knee pain, targeting the correct issue will put you on the path towards proper treatment. Without a professional diagnosis, you may be putting unnecessary strain on your injury, potentially making it worse. Should you experience your symptoms for an extended period of time, or if you are unable to walk without pain, it’s time to seek professional attention.
Request an Appointment with IMPACT Physical Therapy
You don’t have to suffer through back of knee pain. Request an appointment with the team at IMPACT Physical Therapy to start your way back to pain-free movements and mobility.
COLD PLUNGE FOR THE POLAR PLUNGE Now through March 2, we’ll donate 20% of your cold water immersion session to the 24th annual Chicago Polar Plunge benefitting Special Olympics Chicago. To participate, purchase a Recovery Session and select "Polar Plunge Donation." Then visit any of the following IMPACT clinics to take the plunge: Champaign, Hinsdale, Naperville, Oak Lawn, Orland Park, or South Loop.