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Re: [RC] Rider's Knee Pain - heidi

Hi Kristi; I went to a friend/orthopedic surgeon several years ago
because of the riding knee pain. The minute he walked into the room, he
said that I have chondromalacia patella too.
What I need to do, is on a
very long ride, I bring some Tylenol with me, and take some before a
ride. I'm allergic to Ibuprofen, or I might take that. I pay careful
attention that my stirrups are equal in length, and I try to ride with
them a little longer than I used to. More like dressage, then like
hunter jumper.

I, too, went through a bout of this several years ago, likely stemming not
only from riding but from the fact that at the time I was actively
conditioning and showing several Mastiffs, and was using a three-wheeler
with minimal shock absorption to condition them, as well as for marking
trail.  The problem indeed is having one's knees loaded and bent at the
same time.

My first step was to get rid of the three-wheeler.

I did take some time off of riding, but was able to come back to it
reasonably pain-free.  The longer stirrups are a real help--I dropped mine
one to two notches.  Having grown up riding western, this was no trouble. 
I'd caution, though, against the fixed stirrup leathers of a western
saddle--that has its own issues.

As to pain meds--Tylenol reduces pain, but is not an antiinflamatory drug.
I, too, am allergic to ibuprofen--but have found that I can take naproxen
(Aleve).  Reducing inflamation helps to reduce the damage done as well, so
it would be preferable to take an NSAID if at all possible.

I still have to watch myself and relax my knees sometimes--I have a
tendency to crank my left foot back against the truck seat on long drives,
for instance, when clutching is unnecessary for long periods of time (and
it is my left knee that was affected)--I have to remember to relax the leg
and open the angle of my knee from time to time.



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[RC] Rider's Knee Pain, beth glover