What To Do If Running Hurts Your Knees

As an avid runner, dealing with knee pain can be a frustrating and discouraging experience. Unfortunately, it’s a common issue that many runners face at some point in their journey. The good news is that there are steps you can take to address the problem and get back to pain-free running. Here are some tips based on my personal experience and insights:

Assessing the Situation

When knee pain strikes, the first step is to assess the situation. Try to pinpoint the exact location and nature of the pain. Is it a sharp pain on the sides of the knees, or a dull ache around the kneecap? Understanding the specific symptoms can help in determining the potential causes and appropriate remedies.

Proper Footwear and Running Technique

One of the major culprits for knee pain in runners is improper footwear and running technique. Investing in quality running shoes that provide proper support and cushioning can make a world of difference. Additionally, pay attention to your running form. Striking the ground with excessive force or with incorrect foot placement can put unnecessary strain on the knees.

Strength Training and Flexibility

Building strength in the muscles surrounding the knees is crucial for injury prevention. Incorporating regular strength training exercises for the quads, hamstrings, and calves can help stabilize the knees and reduce the risk of pain. Furthermore, don’t overlook the importance of flexibility. Stretching the muscles before and after a run can improve joint mobility and decrease the likelihood of knee discomfort.

Rest and Recovery

It’s important to listen to your body and allow for adequate rest and recovery time. Overtraining and pushing through pain can exacerbate knee issues. Consider incorporating rest days into your workout routine and cross-training with low-impact activities like swimming or cycling to give your knees a break while maintaining fitness.

Seeking Professional Help

If the knee pain persists or worsens despite your efforts, seeking professional help is crucial. A sports doctor or physical therapist can provide a proper diagnosis and recommend a tailored treatment plan. This might involve targeted exercises, corrective techniques, or even temporary modifications to your running routine.


Dealing with knee pain as a runner can be frustrating, but it’s important not to ignore it. By addressing the issue early on, making necessary adjustments to your training regimen, and seeking professional guidance when needed, you can effectively overcome knee discomfort and continue pursuing your passion for running.