I’m having pain in my knee when jumping and squatting during basketball.

Therapeutic Associates
Basketball-Player
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When I use my left leg to change directions quickly or jump, I experience pain on the lower, outer part and middle of my knee where my patellar tendon meets my shin. I stayed off of it and iced for a few weeks and there was no change. I have also tried MANY different types of stretching including stretches for patellar tendonitis, lcl, and it band. However, I’ve noticed I feel pain after doing flamingoes with that leg. What do you think this could be, and will it get worse if I continue to do sports since basketball season is about to start?

Disclaimer: Please note, this reply is for informational purposes only. It’s not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician, physical therapist, or other qualified health provider with a medical condition.

Things to Know

  • Ice, rest, and stretching are all good places to start.
  • A physical therapist would be able to assess your situation.
  • his is best done before the season to avoid exasperating the injury.

Thank you for your question. We’ll do our best to answer it well, but please keep in mind that we are unable to make a specific comment on your condition without a physical exam.

Knee pain during basketball

It sounds like you have tried several wise approaches to addressing your knee pain. Ice, rest, and stretching are all good places to start. 

Based on the location of your symptoms and provoking factors, you may have patellar tendonitis, or you may have something like sprained knee or ligamentous instability elsewhere that is causing increased irritation to the outside of the knee. Patellar tendonitis would most commonly feel painful right over the tendon and be painful with squatting and stairs, while an injury to your ligament would feel like your knee sometimes was unstable or “giving out.” 

Another possible reason for your knee pain could be abnormal body mechanics at your hip or low back that are putting extra stress on your knee in the positions you mentioned.

Whatever the source, this would likely benefit from further in-person investigation if it is provoked at all by motions you do in basketball (i.e. cutting and pivoting). A physical therapist would be able to assess the tissue around the knee in order to give you a diagnosis, a movement analysis and treatment options as well as a wellness plan individually designed to prevent this and other injuries from occurring. This is best done before the season so that you don’t end up with an injury that grows during the season and eventually keeps you out of play.

Check out our blog Dynamic Warm Ups for Basketball to ensure you’re setting yourself up for success!

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