Tag Archives: tendinitis

physical therapy knee pain

How Physical Therapy Helps Knee Rehabilitation

How physical therapy helps knee rehabilitation and how physical therapy provides knee rehabilitation.

Physical therapists can provide more than pre/post surgical knee rehabilitation for patients experiencing knee pain.

What Causes Knee Pain?
The knee is a relatively simple joint required to do a complicated job…to provide flexible mobility while bearing considerable weight. While walking down the street, our knees bear three to five times our body weight. When the knee is overstressed in sports or in everyday activities, these structures can break down — and a knee injury occurs.

Common Knee Problems Seen by Our Physical Therapists:

  • Strain / Sprain
  • Arthritis Pain
  • Muscle Weakness
  • Ligament Sprains
  • ACL Tears
  • Tendinitis (ie: Patellar, Pes Anserinus)
  • Chondromalacia Patella
  • Patellofemoral Syndrome / Knee Pain
  • Pre / Post Operative Therapy

How Physical Therapy Provides Knee Rehabilitation
Rehabilitation acutely after knee surgery or a knee injury primarily centers around decreasing swelling in the knee joint. Even a small amount of fluid inhibits the quadriceps muscle on the front of knee by slowing the signal for movement traveling from the brain to the muscle. Manual techniques to decrease muscle spasm and improve length tension relationships of soft tissue are also incorporated. Gradually, exercises to increase strength, range of motion and functional mobility are introduced.

Treatments Offered Include:

  • Comprehensive evaluation with an emphasis on determining the source of the problem
  • Individualized and specific exercise programs
  • Manual therapy (hands-on treatment)
  • Modalities as needed
  • Work and sport specific simulations
  • Progressive home program to help restore independence and self-management

Knee Rehabilitation Goals:

  • Reduce Pain
  • Improve Mobility
  • Movement Awareness/Gait Training
  • Functional Strength
  • Patient Education

For more information on knee injuries visit our PT & Me Knee Injury Center page by clicking here.

The PT & Me Injury Center goes over diagnoses on how physical therapists treat specific injuries.

To find or search for a local participating PT & Me physical therapy clinic in your local area please click here.

Achilles tendon

Achilles Tendon Care – New Therapy Can End Months of Pain


The Achilles tendon is the large cord-like structure at the back of the ankle. It is responsible for transferring the muscle forces generated by the calf, which in turn allows you to roll onto the ball of your foot during walking and running.

We don’t realize it, but this tendon can withstand tremendous stress. It can tolerate forces of greater than 1000 pounds. However, it is also a tendon that can become inflamed and injured. Symptoms include pain (in the tendon or where it attaches to the heel bone), swelling, weakness in the leg and morning stiffness. The discomfort that resolves as the day progresses is common.

Often, physical therapists see clients that experience chronic Achilles pain. New research concludes that there is hope for these patients. Recent studies have shown that a certain Achilles condition called tendinosis, responds very well to a specific program of, what we call, eccentric loading. Given enough time and proper technique, physical therapists can help these patients recover from a problem that may have been bothersome for several months.

Who do you know that is experiencing Achilles or some other type of foot pain? There is a good chance that physical therapy can help, and make dramatic changes in someone’s condition. Please, don’t hesitate to call your physical therapist.

What should I put on a strained muscle or joint? This is a popular question. The answer is a simple acronym:

• R est
• I ce
• C ompression
• E levation


You need to rest an injured joint, muscle or ligament. Ice helps with pain relief and to some degree, decreases swelling. Compression and elevation help decrease the swelling that results from a soft tissue injury. Excessive swelling can cause additional cell/tissue damage.

Picture of a proper RICE technique on the knee:


physical therapy near me

Gait Analysis

Keeping Pace – The Value of a Gait Analysis

Gait Analysis

As the warmer weather comes to an end we may just now be seeing the emphatic group of athletes who push their bodies to the limits. Some push too hard and too fast while others endure countless episodes of micro-injury that slowly breaks down their system.  You guessed it – Runners.

For those of us in the medical profession that have the pleasure of working with the running population, we know that they can sometimes be the most challenging group to work with.  That being said they also provide us an opportunity to play a tole in preserving a very important piece of their quality of life. Whether it’s a novice runner who just “got the bug” or an experienced runner who knows of nothing else but to run, they all have something in common: recognizing what they are doing to their body!

In the orthopedic community we see mostly micro-trauma and repetitive use injuries in the form of tendinitis, bursitis, muscle strains and joint pain. During the running season we do our best to control the situation by advising rest, stretching, ice, etc; but what else can we do when eliminating the source of trauma is not a plausible answer? One solution is to speak  their language. How do you run? Running is natural, we just learn how to do it and most runners have never been coached how to run properly, Even very efficient runners can have biomechanical faults that lead to increased stress in any one area. A good rehab program would consist of:

  • Symptom management
  • Education of proper stretches, modifications to footwear, strengthening (including core)
  • Advice on what to do the next time they are injured

Often overlooked is the form they take when running. There is bountiful information to by learned by watching the way someone moves. A single flaw in running mechanics is magnified a thousand times with each foot strike. If we can’t stop someone from invoking trauma to their body, we can teach our runners how to make it less traumatic in the first place.

This is where a video gait analysis comes in handy. A video gait analysis enables us to zoom in on targeted areas and see what is actually going on at various joints. With plenty of normative data and efficient runners for comparison, physical therapist can provide different perspectives for patients.  By slowing down a sequence of strides frame by frame we can not only focus on several links in the chain at once, but we can show runners exactly how their actions are impacting their body. We can also show them targeted angles and body positions which shows runners a side of themselves they are unable to see otherwise.

Formulating a productive plan of care in rehabilitation can now include very specific exercises and technique modification. When added to traditional treatments of common running injuries the overall outcome is enhanced and often more timely. If you are running in pain – ask your physical therapist for a video gait analysis.

Written by the therapists at Plymouth Physical Therapy Specialists.