TROUBLESHOOTING YOUR BIKE
Check that your shoe cleats are not jiggly or worn as too much movement in the cleat can lead to knee pain.
Front of knee pain: Try raising and/or moving the saddle rearward 1–2mm.
Back of knee pain: Try lowering and/or moving the saddle forward 1–2mm.
The nice thing about solving a bike fit issue is you have a likely cause for your knee pain. A few days off and a gradual resumption of training, and you will likely not have long-term issues. But, listen to these warning signs early.
For the already injured cyclist, a correct fit in addition to consultations with a physiotherapist on tissues/movement is your ticket to recovery.
IF THE PAIN IS ACUTE OR NEW …
“The point of pain is to get you to do something. Ideally, it’s telling you to protect yourself. Pain is an alarm, and alarms are designed to create action,” says Greg Lehman, a physiotherapist and chiropractor who helps clients work through their pain using movement and considers psychological and social elements of an athlete’s sport and life that may influence that pain.
When we first feel pain, we should consider it an indication to tweak our approach, but not that we need to abandon our sport altogether. “Does changing technique change their pain? Is there something to change the loading?” This could include adding strength training to your regimen, adjusting your cleat position, using flat pedals for some of your rides, trying a higher cadence, switching to a different bike or standing up more regularly while riding as options to change the load your knees are under while riding.