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Jonathan Kessler 04-12-2005 11:37 AM

I've dealt with low back and shoulder injuries, but my knees have always been fine, up to now. But now...
My right knee feels "tight". Not hurting per se, and no obvious swelling. It is difficult for me to go to the end range of motion (fully bent), like when I kneel fully ("seiza" position), and at that point it hurts a bit. I can do squats without pain, though, but going onto my knees and keeping a good base while in someone's "guard" in BJJ is getting to be problematic. This started a couple of weeks ago. Stretching seemed to help for a while. Now it helps a bit, but has not helped much. Icing seems to help a bit too, but again, not completely.
I am also getting more "clicking and popping" in that knee joint.
Anyone experienced anything similar, or have any insight into what might be going on and how I can heal it? It's not a major problem yet, but I'd like to keep it from becoming one.

Lincoln Brigham 04-12-2005 12:02 PM

How flexible are your hip flexors? Are you stretching those?

Carrie Klumpar 04-12-2005 12:31 PM


I am not an expert (though I have become more familiar with knee problems than I ever wanted to be), but the combination of new (or increased) clicking, incomplete ROM, and tightness makes me think it wouldn't hurt to see a PT or orthopod (not a general practitioner doc) and see if you can rule out meniscus damage. If you do have some that's only minor, you'll want to take corrective action at this point, rather than playing stoic now but ending up with a bigger problem later.

Not to overreact. Hopefully, it's "nothing," but you never know. There are some things that a little dose of ybf won't treat adequately.

Jonathan Kessler 04-12-2005 01:28 PM

Carrie, thanks.
Since our GP will refer for PT, I think I'll go that route.
Lincoln - flexibility is an ongoing issue for me. I do stretch my hip flexors daily.

Mike Moore 04-18-2005 09:09 PM

Jonathan - From your description, it sounds like your primary symptom is that your knee feels tight when you attempt to flex it completely, especially if you are kneeling on that knee. This is possible due to fluid in the knee, either a prepatellar or infrapatellar bursitis (fancy words for inflammed sac of water in front of or below the knee cap) or an effusion (fluid) in the knee joint itself. The former conditions could be caused by the seiza position (do you train on a hardwood floor?) or other activities where you are kneeling. The latter may be due to an internal injury to the knee - torn ACL, torn meniscus, etc. (these may be relatively painless). Another possibility that occurs in some folks with long backgrounds in martial arts and the seiza position is a stretching of the ligamentous tissues that anchor the patella in place. This results in an incorrect tracking by the patella from its normal "groove". While this usually produces pain, it is possible that this has irritated your knee and produced an effusion. Bottom Line: (1) The tightness is most likely due to fluid and swelling wheter you can see it or not, (2) It sounds like you should see an orthopedic surgeon for an accurate diagnosis (just because he's a surgeon doen't mean he's going to cut on you!). Best of luck!

Jonathan Kessler 04-21-2005 09:55 PM

The verdict from the PT is that either my miniscus is wearing down (less likely) or that my patella (and associated tissues) got inflamed from poor form - my knees going out too far forward. Sure enough, I do that, so the Tx is for me to watch my form when I squat (and associated movements), lunge, etc. I've been focusing on keeping the arch in my low back, now I'll be focusing on my knees as well.

Carrie Klumpar 04-26-2005 10:18 AM

And think weight on the heels all the way through the squat, including coming out of the hole.

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