Tag Archives: Knee Pain

Back to running after two years of knee injury #01

Rebuilding my running

runner practicing elbow drive
Elbow Drive Practice

I was recommended a visit to John by a colleague after living with a knee injury for the past 2 years. John and I are currently working towards getting me back running which is something I have really missed since my injury. In my first 3 sessions, John has taken a really holistic approach to my injury and has identified different links and factors that haven’t been highlighted to me before, but which make a lot of sense. Now we are working on the way I sit and stand in normal life (which leaves a lot to be desired especially as my job is largely desk based) as a starting point to work towards running. I’m not having to do loads of exercises every day but rather I am trying to think about and be aware of how I’m holding myself (or try not to think too much as this seems to be the problem!) and to re-programme old habits. I have booked a 10k race in October so this is what we are working towards, fingers crossed!


Last week I did Neural Flossing, by the end of the week I was experiencing hip pain in my left hip and stiffness when I stood up after sitting for long periods of time. To combat this, John provided me with a different stretch – putting my legs in a sort of figure of 4 while lying on my back, this stretched my lower hip and upper leg area – after a couple days of doing this the hip pain disappeared. The combining of this and the Neural Flossing is working on increasing the degree of movement in my left leg.


physio-neural-flossing-ra physio-neural-flossing-stretched physio-hip-stretch

This week I went on the treadmill to look at how I walk and run; a muscle in my left hip/upper bottom does not engage when I walk, I almost learn back which could be contributing to my back pain, as well as twisting my upper body while walking and even more so when running. While running I bounce up and down a lot and I put my heel out in front of me, which means that I am not exerting energy in the right places while running.

To combat these habits John gave me the following exercises to work on over the week:

  • 5-5: Setting the treadmill on 5 incline & 5 speed, where I need to engage my core and lean forward to promote me walking on the front of my foot rather than leaning back on the heel.  While doing this I put my hands on my hips/upper bottom to make sure my muscle was engaging.
  • Use the treadmill to lean forward like a ski jumper, and using one leg at a time to practice my leg movement where my foot will land in line with my body (rather than out in front), this is through pretending I was on a scooter with an angry horse leg that goes up, round and down. Then using the treadmill to pretend that I was bump starting a car – this was to help me with leaning forward, bouncing less while running, and running with my feet landing below me not out in front of me.
  • Arm Swing – stationary – this is engaging my core and standing like a person about to skip – moving my arms forwards and backwards close to my body in an exaggerated running movement, but not allowing my body to twist as I moved. Then doing this while on the balls of my feet – this I found a lot harder due to my inability to balance.
  • John also sent me a video clip that provided tips on running and form to improve over stepping – it focused on bum kicks, skipping and running barefoot.


This week took a lot of thought as I had to concentrate on a lot of different areas of my body at once, but it’s crazy what difference engaging your core can do.

Climber’s story #01

I’ve visited John in the past for knee issues but this time I was desperate…..

In this picture; tight muscles and ligaments on the front of the LEFT thigh are forcing the spine to overwork
Back & Pelvis biomechanics causing back and hip pain

It all started last summer on a trip to Montenegro. It was a pretty active trip – climbing mountains, rafting, sea kayaking. Halfway through the trip I started to experience extreme pain in the left side of my ribs and abdomen. The pain was so bad I made two trips to the local hospitals – an interesting but fruitless experience. Back in the UK, I was poked and prodded. An x-ray, ultrasound and bloods revealed nothing. A viral infection of my intercostal muscles was the doctor’s diagnosis. It would pass. I stopped climbing (my favourite hobby) and tried a chiropracter. After a few painful weeks it had receded to a twinge but never went away.
> Then at Christmas my body started to misbehave again. This time the rib pain came back but it was accompanied by the emergence of painful lumps on my left hamstring. What next I thought? I’ve always been a healthy active person, and I’m only 35 but now I was anxious. Back at the doctors I had more tests, more scans, but still nothing. I left the doctors with no diagnosis and no follow-up planned, but still in pain.
> This is the point at which I found myself back at John’s clinic. Perhaps he could help. We discussed my history and my job, which is desk based but involves lots of travel up to London for meetings. The first thing John did was a bit of a mechanical review. He checked my posture. My head is sitting further forward than it should giving me a round shouldered effect. My range of movement rotating to the right is limited and my left hip flexor is really tight. John thought there may be problems at the top and bottom of my spine, both musculoskeletal and nerve related. The side pain could simply be because this is the area that has been forced to compensate for all the weaknesses elsewhere. He even thinks that the hamstring lumps could be the result of toxins being “dumped” here from other parts of my body.
> I was relieved that there could be light at the end of the tunnel. John performed a few manipulations and treatments and there was an improvement in my range of movement by the end of the session. He gave me some exercises to do and was confident that he can help me. But I know I have to put in the work and make the exercises part of my daily routine. We agreed to arrange another session and I left Moti a little lighter and a lot less anxious than when I arrived.

Student Discount Physio in Bristol – £33

Discount Physio for Students in Bristol
Discount Physio for Students in Bristol  https://aaaphysio.cliniko.com/bookings

Student Discount Physio in Bristol

Tins of beans for dinner, studying and recycled toilet paper. Its tough being a student, so we thought we’d make life that little bit easier….

Bring along your student card and receive your physio treatment for as little as £33*.

Book online 24/7 or drop-in in person to the AAA-Physio Clinic @ Moti Running Store, 49 Whiteladies Road (Near The BBC)

*T&C’s apply – Pre-booking & payment essential.
£33 is the price for a 30 minute follow up appointment

Screen shot of the AAA-Physio booking using our online diary
Simple booking using our online diary

This entry was posted in ankle, groin injury, heel pain, Neck Pain, overuse injury, pain – lower limb, Physio in Bristol, Plantar Fasciitis, run off road, Shoulder Physio Expert, Sports & running injury and tagged ankle and knee pain, Bristol half marathon, bristol physio, BS6, BS7, BS8, BS9, groin strain, help with running, Knee Pain, off peak discount, Shin pain and shin splints, sports injury clinic, Sports Injury Clinic in Bristol, student discount physio on by physiojohn.


Posture and stability training for teenagers

These drills from The Running School (R) , have great potential for improving the trunk and lower limb strength and stability in a range of age groups.

I can see this style of exercise being particulary effective and engaging for teenagers. JS Physio MSc

Bristol Physio John Stephenson has been providing movement retraining courses for Health Professionals & Physiotherapists since 1999. He also works on a 1:1 basis with private clients wishing to improve their low back stability and running efficiency. Or for a more gentle introduction, ask about the Walk:BacK & Row:BacK programmes!
Book a consultation or free minute open clinic online:

Student Discount Physio

Tins of beans for dinner, studying and recycled toilet paper. Its tough being a student, so we thought we’d make life that little bit easier….

Bring along your student card and receive your physio treatment for as little as £33*.

Book online 24/7 or drop-in in person to the AAA-Physio Clinic @ Moti Running Store, 49 Whiteladies Road (Near The BBC)

*T&C’s apply – Pre-booking & payment essential.
£33 is the price for a 30 minute follow up appointment

Rehab the body – not the injury!

Picture showing - London Marathon Finishers Medal 2013
London Marathon Finishers Medal 2013

Speaking at the recent Physiotherapists in Sports conference, former Olympic USA coach Vern Gambetta called on delegates to consider the whole body and the brain when treating patients. ‘If it hurts, we look for where it hurts, and we rehab the hell out of that, and leave the rest of it,’ he said.

‘You can see a lot by watching’ – Gambetta said, ‘We miss what we don’t see. Sometimes it’s as simple as watching someone from all sides.’

This approach resonates and underpins everything we do in the AAA-Physio clinic at Moti – Which is why we get great results!
So if your are stuck in a loop of; injury – rest – re-injury and can’t see a way out. Book some expert help from the Therapy Team at Moti

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Physio Christmas Opening Hours 2012-2013

Booking 0800 015 0005 or mb. 07795 203 513

AAA-Physio Christmas Hours 2012-13

24th Dec. Christmas Eve – OPEN @ MOTI 11am-2pm

27th Dec. Thurs – OPEN @ MOTI 9am-12.30

28th Dec. Fri. OPEN @ Bannatyne’s 8.30-10am + 1.30-3pm.


3rd Jan. Thurs OPEN @ MOTI 8.30am-12.30



Fixing my Tennis Knee with Physio

I developed a bad knee due to sedentary work – not my tennis.  The problem turned acute after an off-road trek in a landrover.  I wanted to get back on the tennis court as soon as possible, so contacted John, who was recommended by one of my players (see Cameron’s post, wrist problem).

I saw John last Friday and have felt immediate improvement.  I was able to walk relatively normally straight after our long session.  John gave a detailed analysis of the problem and showed his impressive understanding of the athlete’s body.  I have seen many physios and the cause of the problem had previously been mis-diagnosed.

I was really pleased with John.  He took time to listen and understand, did some effective manipulations and gave me exercises leading to rapid improvements.  I am confident I will be thrashing on court in the near future.  I’ll send any of my players to John in the future.  Would highly recommend.    Many thanks, Ondrej

wk 1. The Trail to 10km PB – Meeting AAA Physio

Right leg cross-over problems
Right leg cross-over problems

Right Knee Patella Tracking Problems
“Learn to Run” with AAA-Physio tomorrow

I first met John on 19th Dec at his clinic in Moti, I went to see him because I have pain in my right knee which causing me pain during running.  John got me doing various stability exercises then various movements to test my flexibility and strength in both legs.  This assessment showed that my left leg was very flexible, whilst my right leg was tight in the hip, IT band and also lower back and weak in the glutes.  John suspected that this was causing the pain in my right knee.  John then videoed me running on the treadmill, which was fascinating to watch and illustrates exactly what he was saying in his assessment….you can see the video in this post.

The video (to a trained eye) shows my left leg is working at full capacity whilst my right leg is not because my right hip tilts forward making my right leg come across my body and this is making me loose power when striking the ground and taking off.  John said that the pain in my knee is not permanent…John’s plan is the strengthen my right leg, glutes, IT band and hip flexors through physio and showing my how the run more effectively..I will use his running workshop and physio to do this….I feel that with his treatment, advice and strengthening exercises I can move towards my goals…sub 20mins 5K and sub 40mins 10k.