Patellar tendonitis is an incredibly common syndrome which affects a large amount of people on a daily basis. I know for myself personally I dealt with patellar tendonitis for a large portion of my youth. Every time I played basketball I had to wear these special straps on my patella tendon which helped to alleviate some of the pain from playing. Although this did give some relief, nothing was truly lasting. Typically patellar tendonitis occurs with individuals who do a large amount of jumping or landing from high impact falls. This is why you may typically hear the term “jumper’s knee” be associated with this exact same ailment. Although this injury is rather common, that does not mean that you simply have to deal with it. There are a large amount of ways that we can help to strengthen the tendon around the patella, to help decrease pain and move better.
So what actually is the patellar tendon? If you feel your knee cap, just below this is a very touch and hard bundle of fibers that run down towards the top of your shin bone. This bundle of fibers is actually your patellar tendon! The patellar tendon helps to keep the knee cap in place, and also transfer force from the ground, through the knee, to the rest of your body. Because of this, as mentioned, individuals which do a lot of high impact activity, excessively, can develop inflammation of the tendon around the area. Although painful at times, not all hope is lost! Let’s take a look at the exercise that I use to help treat this.
One of my favorite exercises I have incorporated into my weekly routine is a slantboard step down.The picture you see above, and in the video linked at the top is me on a slantboard. If you don’t already have a slantboard, I highly recommend investing in one. The slantboard is a great piece of equipment that really helps to strengthen your knees in a variety of different ways. In this instance we are using it to help strengthen our patellar tendon. If you want to grab a slantboard for yourself, visit HERE.
With that said, here is how to perform a slantboard step down:
- Step onto the slantboard with one foot on it. You will likely feel the muscle in this leg already working.
- With the leg on the slantboard, slowly bend it, allowing your heel to touch down right next to the slant board.
- Once you tap your heel of the free leg, straighten the leg that is touching the slantboard.
- Repeat this for 20-30 repetitions, or when you feel a good burn in the muscles.
This exercise, when done over time, will help to strengthen the patellar tendon and improve blood flow to this area. The idea of this is to move without pain. If you feel pain in this movement, try to stop just short of the pain, ultimately still completing the movement. One thing I mentioned in the video that is linked is that this is a touch exercise on your balance. If you struggle with balance, it is okay to hold onto a wall or have piece of wood or other assistive device to help you up. We wish you the best of luck on your treatment of this issue. Let us know how it works for you!
FOR A YOUTUBE VIDEO OF THE TOPIC, CLICK HERE.
TO PURCHASE A SLANTBOARD CLICK HERE.
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