Moralizing body parts and physiotherapy

I’m still working away at physio. Progress is being made. My knee hurts less and that’s a very good thing.

I’m amused though at the language physiotherapists use to describe body parts. Apparently I have lazy glutes and as a result have an angry miniscus.

Here’s one of the glute strengthening exercises I’m doing.

Makes sense that if one body part isn’t doing it’s share of the work, that other body parts do too much.

But is that right? I read this week in Runners World that the glute-knee connection is more complicated than you might think. See this article on hip weakness and knee pain.

If you’ve got knee pain, you might need to strengthen your hips. That’s an increasingly common prescription these days, thanks to a bunch of research over the past decade or so linking conditions like runner’s knee (also known as patellofemoral pain, or PFP) and more recently iliotibial band syndrome to sub-par hip strength. But there’s a key question lurking behind these studies: do you develop knee pain because your hips are weak, or do your hips get weak because your knees hurt and you’re forced to alter your movement patterns?

In my case physio seems to be working, or it might be that just not running is the thing that’s helping, so I’ll keep it up. Ready for a very short, gentle run soon to try it out. Wish me luck!


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