Patellar Tendonitis: Hip Flexor Pain
Posted by: Julie Graves | Head Athletic Trainer
Patellar tendonitis is inflammation to the patellar tendon/fibrous band (directly below the knee cap) connecting the quadricep muscles to their insertion site (tibial tuberosity). The patellar tendon and hip flexor (the fibrous band connecting the hip bone in the front to the quadricep muscles) can often become inflamed because the quadricep muscles (muscle belly) have knots/trigger points/pain points. This causes excess pull on the patellar tendon and hip flexor tendons.
Getting the knots out of the muscle belly of the quadricep muscles is crucial to decreasing pain and inflammation at either of these sites.
Follow These Steps To Reduce Pain:
(1) Heat the quadricep muscles (i.e. electric heating pad or hot Epsom salt bath for 15 minutes)
(2) Foam roll. If you do not have a foam roller, I recommend this one on Amazon.
- It is CRUCIAL that foam rolling is done slowly and controlled. You should not just roll quickly over any muscle you are working on. You will find knots/trigger points when foam rolling. Stop on those points and wait at least 30 seconds. This will allow the knot to subside. Move to the next knot.
- Be sure to roll out the entire quadricep muscles from the inside of the thigh to the outside of the thigh.
- Foam rolling should be performed even when the athlete is not injured. This is a crucial part of muscle recovery and rejuvenation as well as injury prevention. Twice a day is the recommended amount. You cannot foam roll or stretch too much.
(4) Dry needling
- This is the cherry on top to all the work above. The technique uses a “dry” needle, one without medication or injection, inserted through the skin into areas of the muscle. Other terms commonly used to describe dry needling, include trigger point dry needling, and intramuscular manual therapy. Dry needling is not acupuncture, a practice based on traditional Chinese medicine and performed by acupuncturists. Dry needling is a part of modern Western medicine principles, and supported by research.
(5) Chopat strap to be worn during activity. This releases some of the tension of the muscle tightness and distributes the force around the patellar tendon.
(6) Preventative T:25 Knee Wearable. I have recommended this to many athletes with patellar tendonitis and many other knee injuries and it cures the issue every time. Wear as directed.