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Chiropractic care for knee injuries

When you think of chiropractic care, you probably think primarily of spinal adjustments. And while that is a big part of what a chiropractor does, chiropractors treat more than just back pain; they assess and diagnose a large range of musculoskeletal conditions, including injuries of the knees.

The knee joint is the attachment point for many major muscle groups and is one of the most complex joints in the human body. It’s made up of four bones and many muscles and ligaments (1). Together, all the structures within the knee allows it to support your body weight, assist with lower limb movement and absorb shock as you walk (2).

Common knee injuries

As the main lower limb motor joint, the knee is perhaps the joint most vulnerable to injury. It’s also susceptible to wear as you age and to the physical effect of conditions such as obesity (2). Given their vital role in everyday movement and their complexity, looking after your knee joints and seeking prompt treatment when something goes wrong is very important.

Common issues you may face when it comes to your knees include:

  • Sprain ligamentous

  • Muscle strain

  • Arthritis and osteoarthritis

  • ITB syndrome

  • Patellofemoral pain syndrome (Runner’s knee)

What your chiropractor can do for knee injuries

Chiropractors’ role is to assess and diagnose musculoskeletal conditions. Although its commonly thought of as the role of physiotherapists, chiropractors are also trained in rehabilitation techniques and addressing biomechanical dysfunction.

Research broadly supports manual therapy as part of a treatment plan for knee pain. One study showed that a short-term manual therapy knee protocol can significantly reduce osteoarthritic knee pain and improve knee function (3). Another revealed that among people with knee pain, manual therapy was the most popular treatment option, over more invasive options such as surgery or medication (4).

So, if you’re suffering from an injury or discomfort in your knee joint, your chiropractor may be able to help by:

  • Assessing biomechanics to identify the root cause of the problem. Joints, tendons, and ligaments and their function are a chiropractor’s bread and butter. Your knees are part of the wider musculoskeletal system, and a chiropractor can assess your knee pain to get to the bottom of why it’s occurring and the best route for treating it.

  • Releasing muscle tension, using soft tissue work or dry needling. Muscles in your lower body need a certain measure of stiffness to allow them to withstand the force of your body weight and movement. Too much or (too little) stiffness in the muscles of your knee can lead to damage to the knee’s structures and pain in it and surrounding joints (5). Releasing tension through manual adjustments can lower the risk of this kind of injury.

  • Mobilising joints to reduce overload on other joints. When one joint is causing pain or not working optimally, you may place unnecessary stress on surrounding joints as you try to compensate. Hips, ankles and the uninjured knee can all be vulnerable to this extra strain. A chiropractor understands how the musculoskeletal system works as a whole, and can help address not only the root issue, but its repercussions in the rest of your body.

  • Developing a strengthening program to help support surrounding muscles. A big part of treating knee pain is putting a plan in place to limit the chance of recurring injury and get you back on your feet. Exercises for dynamic flexibility, neuromotor strength and balance (5) are all part of a rehabilitation plan your chiropractor can help you to develop and then stick to.

So, don’t put up with knee pain any longer! Get in touch with our team today to make an appointment and discuss your needs.


1 Physiopedia, Knee, 2022

2 L Zhang, G Liu, B Han, Z Wang, Y Yan, J Ma, P Wei., Knee Joint Biomechanics in Physiological Conditions and How Pathologies Can Affect It: A Systematic Review, Appl Bionics Biomech, 2020

3 H Pollard, G Ward, W Hoskins, K Hardy., The effect of a manual therapy knee protocol on osteoarthritic knee pain: a randomised controlled trial, Journal of the Candian Chiropractic Association, 2008

4 H Mitchell, M Hurley., Management of chronic knee pain: A survey of patient preferences and treatment received, BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders, 2008

5 H Vincent, M Brownstein, K Vincent., Injury Prevention, Safe Training Techniques, Rehabilitation, and Return to Sport in Trail Runners, Anthroscopy, Sports Medicine, and Rehabilitation, 2022


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