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Tightness back of leg behind knee? (Read 73 times)

Sunflower747


    I was wondering if anyone else experienced this.. after races or hard runs  I get a strange tightness on the back of my leg behind knee (along the crease of the back of legs where the leg bends).  It isn't painful when I run.. just feels tight but because of its location I'm worried it may develop into some kind of tendon issue.  I try to get regular massages and my massage therapist notices it is also tight and tries to massage it and it is extremely sensitive... I think I have almost quicked him several times since my leg kind of involuntarily jumps whenever it is touched.   I ran 13 miles yesterday since I'm 2 weeks post marathon now and felt good but it was noticeably tight during the run.  I try to stretch and foam roll regularly.   Just wondering if anyone else experienced this, what it may be, and how careful I need to be about it (stop running until it's gone etc).. I also realize I should probably go see a specialist but just wanted to check to see if anyone experienced something similar here first Smile. Thank you!

      Well the thing about most running injuries is that if you ask 10 different people (doctors or otherwise), you will 10 different opinions. See a specialist if you want, but don't necessarily expect any magic answers.

       

      My general approach is that if it doesn't actually get worse while running, and it doesn't change your gait in any way, keep running. Plenty of things loosen up and feel better after warming up, and eventually go away on their own. Plus at 2 weeks post marathon you are still recovering. I had pain in that area for a while, although I didn't feel anything while not running. It would  start a few miles into a run and I would end up having to bail. Best guess was hamstring tendonitis. I just had to rest it for a while; I would periodically try running again, and after a couple months it stopped happening. I have made a routine of stretching after every run; I can't prove it helps but I feel like it does.

      Dave

      Sunflower747


        Thanks Dave!  I think I may try to take it easy this next week and see how it feels.  I want to make sure I'm fully recovered before starting up training again. I only feel it when running too and was worried it could be the start of tendonitis.  It is fairly mild though so I think it shohld

        go away.  Thanks!!

        Marky_Mark_17


          It's called the popliteus muscle Wink

           

          I find mine gets a little tight at the end of longer runs and was sore after a marathon I did last weekend.  Came right pretty quickly though.  I'd agree with Dave - if it's not actually sore when running and it's not getting worse, just keep running, don't push it too hard, and see what happens.

          PRs:

          5km: 16:43 (Auckland Corporate Challenge, Nov-17) | 10km: 34:44 (Albany Lakes Summer Series, Race 2, Feb-17)

          HM: 1:18:20 (Auckland Half Marathon, Oct-16) | FM: 2:57:36 (Auckland Marathon, Oct-17)

          Up next:  Orewa Beach Half Marathon, 11 Feb 2018

            yeah I get that sometimes, along with pretty much all other minor/moderate soreness/tightness that runners get. I think Ive had them all at one time or another.  If I am going through a period (weeks) where I'm adding extra stress from running (more or harder) combined with some longer/tougher work days I will get minor pain & tightness behind the knee.  cutting back abit for couple of days & light stretching always helps.   I can get pain behind the knee after driving for long periods of time too. As I get older I need to take more breaks from driving, even if it is just stopping, getting out of car, & walk for couple minutes.  Sitting in same position for long periods of time (watching tv) can cause tightening too.   If that happens then I will just get up & walk around house or get on floor for light stretching.

             

            Seems I have a different ache/soreness each day.  most go away after some warmup miles.    stretching hamstrings & stretches that "open up" the glutes seems to help.  I would be very careful using a foam roller in that area, hamstrings yes, but that area behind the knee I would stay away from with the roller.  and as another said, you are probably still not 100% recovered from your marathon.

            spinach


              Another possibility. I have frequently gotten a tightness or a feeling of something blocking my knee bending behind the knee. I have had some problems with the knee and it tunred out that I had a Baker's cyst. This is a situation where the fluid that lubricates the joint (my knee) escapes form the joint and forms a packet of fluid behind my knee.  I have found that wearing a compression sleeve on the knee helps to prevent this.  This is another possibility.

              Sunflower747


                Thanks Mark!  I'll keep running and try to keep it easy!  I actually googled all the muscles and IDedit as the popliteus muscle too but wasn't completely sure haha.  I thought it could maybe still be a tendon issue.  I'll take sore/tight muscle over sore tendon!

                It's called the popliteus muscle Wink

                 

                I find mine gets a little tight at the end of longer runs and was sore after a marathon I did last weekend.  Came right pretty quickly though.  I'd agree with Dave - if it's not actually sore when running and it's not getting worse, just keep running, don't push it too hard, and see what happens.

                Sunflower747


                  Thanks for the help! I'm going to work on stretching and foam rolling everyday and see if it helps.  I try to do it everyday but get lazy so it's usually only a few times a week.  Also thanks for letting me know to not foam roll it.  I asked my massage therapist and he said it would be fine to foam roll but couldn't tell if he was just saying that.  He massages it and has taken classes to become a therapist so have just been trusting his advice and foam rolling it sometimes.

                  yeah I get that sometimes, along with pretty much all other minor/moderate soreness/tightness that runners get. I think Ive had them all at one time or another.  If I am going through a period (weeks) where I'm adding extra stress from running (more or harder) combined with some longer/tougher work days I will get minor pain & tightness behind the knee.  cutting back abit for couple of days & light stretching always helps.   I can get pain behind the knee after driving for long periods of time too. As I get older I need to take more breaks from driving, even if it is just stopping, getting out of car, & walk for couple minutes.  Sitting in same position for long periods of time (watching tv) can cause tightening too.   If that happens then I will just get up & walk around house or get on floor for light stretching.

                   

                  Seems I have a different ache/soreness each day.  most go away after some warmup miles.    stretching hamstrings & stretches that "open up" the glutes seems to help.  I would be very careful using a foam roller in that area, hamstrings yes, but that area behind the knee I would stay away from with the roller.  and as another said, you are probably still not 100% recovered from your marathon.

                    Another possibility ... your lower hamstring.  I've had issues off and on with lower hamstring tendonitis and at times the exact location that you described feels really super tight  (and I've been to the dr and PT for it, so this isnt just me guessing).  If you're feeling this especially at the end of a race or hard workout, it's highly possible that you're overstriding which pulls on those lower hamstrings/tendons.

                      just be extremely careful rolling it,  very tender sensitive area.   be careful rolling over any joints as well.  personally I stay away from those areas when I use a foam roller.  I have not been using roller recently.  I should be more consistence

                      Sunflower747


                        So my hamstring/back of knee issue has been improving and it is still not painful and is mostly not noticeable.  I still feel something there though (hard to explain sort of a tightness) and I felt this knot in my hamstring just above the crease of my knee area.  My increase in mileage has been going well and overall I feel good and the area seems to be improving but I think I want to get this checked out before I get into my actual marathon training.  What type of specialist should I see?  Just a physical therapist?  I see a massage therapist but I'm nervous having him work on it since I don't know what it is.  I could possibly need to see some kind of trigger point specialist?  But would physical therapist be the best place to start?  I have never seen anyone before for a running injury/issue so just wanted to see if anyone had any advice. Thanks!

                          I wouldn't see anyone. I'm sure someone would be happy to sell you a series of massage sessions or 8 weeks of PT, but only because it's their job to do so. If it doesn't actually hurt, just keep doing what you're doing. My 2 cents.

                          Dave