There are a number of reasons why knees . In my practice, a fairly common one I see is Patellofemoral Syndrome and Chondromalacia Patella. Honestly, it might be easier to treat than it is to say. With Patellofemoral Syndrome, the patella or Knee Cap rubs against one side of (D) Intercondylar Fossa or underside of the Patella rather than tracking straight down the middle. As a result, the Patellofemoral Joint on either bone may become inflamed, causing pain that is worse with activity or prolonged sitting. As the condition progresses, softening and roughening of the articular cartilage on the underside of the patella occurs, leading to Chondromalacia Patella. Home care with PRICE (protection, rest, ice, compression, and elevation) therapy, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, and exercises (such as straight leg raises) that balance the muscles around the patella work for most people. As it is with other conditions, the root cause (typically foot issues) must be determined and treated at the same time for lasting results.
Our Knee Cap aka Patella is designed to be pulled straight when all Quadriceps (muscles of the thigh) contract at the same time (ABC). The Patella is firmly tethered to the lower leg by a strong ligament so it’s not going anywhere far but it works best staying dead center in the groove aka Intercondylar Fossa (D) otherwise it rubs against one side: abrading it, irritating it and eventually wearing it away. So when the outer quad muscles (B) are stronger, the Patella moves towards the outside. This may or may not be painful and it may or may not be noisy, but it won’t resolve on its own and it will worsen.
Muscles require being rebalanced so that they can pull your Knee Cap straight. Think of your knee like the trolly on your garage door opener. It functions optimally in a straight line (E) when the door is balanced and everything lines up. As long as it all stays the same, it works without a problem. But, when one thing is out of balance then it gets bound up and like your car in the garage, you’re not going anywhere (well, at least not quickly or comfortably. A physical therapist will rightly have you exercise the weaker muscle, but a trained massage therapist will quickly reset those muscles through massage and stretch a lot quicker.