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Alexander Karatis 01-20-2006 07:58 AM

For the past week I have noticed that my left knee does a little "snap" as soon as my squat reaches parallel. Once I go all the way down and come back over parallel again it feels like something snaps back into place again. It feels like a string (tendon? muscle?) that runs vertically down my knee gets jolted somewhere at that point and then returns to normal.

This only in my left knee, and when squating. It has been there for about two weeks now. Today, I noticed knee pain for the first time in my life. The feeling is like there are sore muscles in and around my knees. They definitely feel tight. This latest, after quite some heavy squating for the past couple of days. I always get sore legs though, no matter the load I pushed and never, ever have I noticed any disturbance in my knees before, which is something that worries me a bit.

Any ideas as to what this might be?

Michael Stehle 01-20-2006 03:06 PM

This would be your I.T. band(iliotibial band) snaping. This is very common and can be easily elieviated w/ ice and stretching. Use a band or rope around your foot, lie on you back, keep your knee locked,lift your leg up, pull your leg across your body(actively and passively). This is just one IT band stretch. I believe has some good explainations on it. Hope this helps.



David Besachio 01-20-2006 09:14 PM

Where do you feel the "snap" located? Front, deep inside, lateral (left side of left knee), etc.

James Hall 01-21-2006 08:43 PM

If it's directly over the anterior knee, it sounds (sorry for the pun) like your patella is snapping back into the groove. If the quad/VMO is not strong enough for the load, the patella will track laterally and then snap into the groove of the femur when the angle is optimal.


Alexander Karatis 01-21-2006 11:40 PM

Hey guys!

Thanks for the help so far. The snapping is felt on the upper part of my knee. It feels like its underneath the topmost edge of my left patella.

James, my squat is definitely not as strong as it used to, but I find it hard to believe that my left quad can't adequately support the load of an airsquat. Also, what did you mean by VMO?

BTW, I think that the snapping happens EXACTLY where I go below parallel.

Thanks again guys!

Alexander Karatis 01-22-2006 12:05 AM

I forgot to add, that this may be due to three days of consecutive running I did while on a business trip the other week (done on mostly dried mud and pebble trails). Of course, I've done much more running in my life and never had I noticed any discomfort around my knees.

Carl Herzog 01-22-2006 09:32 AM

Two things, which may or may not be relevant:

1) Knee pain is often not felt where the actual problem occurs. This makes diagnosis a challenge at times, even when face-to-face with a knowledgeable specialist.

2) It is not unusual to aggravate the knees when running on the surfaces you describe if you're not used to it. Iliotibial band syndrome (mentioned above) is especially common in this scenario.

Richard Paul Ham-Williams 01-25-2006 09:35 AM

i would have to agree on the ITB band tendon - runs from TFL if i remember correctly - it is often called runners knee - stretch away dude and you should be fine

Alexander Karatis 01-26-2006 12:00 AM

I really hope that's it guys but I somehow doubt it! It feels strange that a small muscle like that would make this loud of a noise. (Think as loud as cracking your fingers)

And yes, I'm going crazy not being able to squat these days!!! (No way I'm risking putting a load over this!)

Richard Paul Ham-Williams 01-26-2006 02:26 AM

the ITB can make a big old noise - it runs basically full lenght of your thigh and is under some large amount of tension - when it is forced over the femoral condyl(think thats correct spelling!) it can pop over with some real force!

If it hurts then go see a Dr.

If it is just a little worrying due to the noise then get stretching :-)

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