Patellofemoral pain symptoms improved after gait modification

Running gait modifications designed to reduce patellofemoral loading also have immediate symptomatic benefits in patients with patellofemoral pain, according to research from Laval University in Quebec City, Canada.

By Jordana Bieze Foster, Lower Extremity Review March 2017

In 32 rearfoot-striking runners with patellofemoral pain, investigators assessed the effects of three modifications: forefoot-strike running, increasing step rate by 10%, and running “softer.”

As expected, all modifications were associated with reduced patellofemoral joint force during running, compared with the participants’ normal running gait. But the modifications were also associated with immediate symptom improvement of at least one point out of 10; 62.5% of runners in the study experienced a positive symptomatic response to at least one of the gait modifications.

“Interventions that immediately induce a decrease in symptoms can really help with obtaining patients’ trust,” said Jean- Francois Esculier, BScPT, MSc, a doctoral student in the department of physical therapy at the university, who presented the findings in February at the American Physical Therapy Association’s Combined Sections Meeting in San Antonio, TX.

Source Lower Extremity Review


Immediate effects of gait retraining on symptoms and running mechanics of runners with patellofemoral pain, Esculier JF, Bouyer LJ, Roy JS. APTA Combined Sections Meeting. San Antonio TX, USA, Feb 2017

  Further reading

Effects of rehabilitation approaches for runners with patellofemoral pain: protocol of a randomised clinical trial addressing specific underlying mechanisms, Esculier JF, Bouyer LJ, Dubois B, Frémont P, Moore L, Roy JS. BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2016 Jan 6;17:5. doi: 10.1186/s12891-015-0859-9.

Lower limb control and strength in runners with and without patellofemoral pain syndrome, Esculier JF, Roy JS, Bouyer LJ. Gait Posture. 2015 Mar;41(3):813-9. doi: 10.1016/j.gaitpost.2015.02.020. Epub 2015 Mar 9.

Also see
Emerging Insights On Gait Changes In Runners in

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