Why Did My Knees Hurt When I Started Back in Running?

Knee pain from running can be located in front, on the outside or back of the knee. The knee is anatomically a complicated joint, so pain affecting it can be because of a number of reasons. These range from overuse and actual injuries, which can be treated, to benign growths, which must be removed. Consult with your physician if you are experiencing knee pain from running.


Runner's knee, pain that affects the front of the knee, can be because of overuse, injury, dislocation or misalignment of the kneecap or flat feet. Problems in other areas of the body, such as the hip, back, or thigh muscles, can also cause pain in the knee. Overuse can cause iliotibial band syndrome, which affects tissue on the outside of the knee that helps stabilize the knee. Baker's cyst, a benign growth, causes swelling and pain behind the knee, at the point where the upper leg meets the lower leg. This growth must be surgically removed. Rest, proper stretching, orthotics for flat feet and knee and thigh exercises may alleviate runner's knee and iliotibial band syndrome.

About the Author

Lexa W. Lee is a New Orleans-based writer with more than 20 years of experience. She has contributed to "Central Nervous System News" and the "Journal of Naturopathic Medicine," as well as several online publications. Lee holds a Bachelor of Science in biology from Reed College, a naturopathic medical degree from the National College of Naturopathic Medicine and served as a postdoctoral researcher in immunology.