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What is Patellar Tendinopathy?

The knee has a different structure from most joints, using the kneecap (or patella) to assist in generating movement. The Patellar tendon connects the kneecap to the tibia. Due to the large forces experienced through the knee, particularly with acceleration and deceleration movements such as sport and jumping, the patellar tendon can be overexposed and become inflamed. Prolonged reactive and inflammatory tendons can degenerate to a permanently damaged state, so early treatment is very important for these conditions.


As with other tendon reactions, the key factor in determining health is load. Our tendons have a certain capacity for load which can be trained through gradual strength and exercise progression. Sudden increases in load will cause the tendon to react negatively - which may lead to tendinopathy. Additionally, the positioning of the patellar tendon exposes it to sustaining damage from falls or other direct trauma.


Patellar tendinopathy most commonly presents with pain at the base of the kneecap, which is often worsened with activities such as running, jumping, climbing stairs, or squatting.

How My Physio My Health treats this condition

At My Physio My Health, we offer a variety of treatment modalities to address patellar tendinopathy. Joint mobilisation, both of the kneecap and the knee, as well as massage across the quadriceps muscles, can improve the quality of movement and reduce tension through the tendon. Following a detailed assessment, your physiotherapist may choose to incorporate modalities such as ultrasound or shockwave therapy into treatment, which have been demonstrated to assist recovery in tendon-related disorders. Your physiotherapist will also develop an exercise program, through a combination of movement and gradual, safe, loading techniques to help build the strength of the tendon. If you are aiming to return to sport, your physiotherapist will help guide you through this process to ensure you receive optimal outcomes.

If you suspect you may have Patellar Tendinopathy or are experiencing similar symptoms, please book with our physio team.

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