Kelly Starrett suggests more solutions to knee problems in Part 3 of a seminar held at CrossFit Santa Cruz on March 14, 2009. Starrett is the owner of San Francisco CrossFit and a Doctor of Physical Therapy.
According to Starrett, knee problems can sometimes be alleviated by creating slack in the system both “upstream and downstream.” By stretching hip flexors and calves and integrating foam rolling into your rehab, you can give a compressed joint some breathing room.
Movements such as push presses and box jumps can be problematic for people with knee problems, but the former can be modified by turning the feet out slightly, and the latter can be scaled with step-ups and step-downs.
Starrett also talks about patella-tracking problems, which may be less about the patella jumping the track and more about the track dropping out from under the patella. The best fix is having “a really strong ass,” which helps create an integrated system where the components work properly in unison to keep everything stable.
Ultimately, the job of the trainer is to figure out a motion and a position that solves any dysfunction with best mechanics.
Additional reading: A Postural Error: A Costly Biomechanical Fault: Muted Hip Function (MHF) by Greg Glassman, published Jan. 1, 2003.