My right knee is hurting, again.
As I noted yesterday, there was a little “pop” during a Marichyasana D adjustment, and nothing seemed immediately amiss. But the day after, it’s awfully tender — a very familiar feeling.
And that’s the thing: familiarity. The pain — it may just be discomfort, really — is very specific. It hurts precisely when I bend my leg into half lotus or just in that direction. It has for the past year. Same thing. It gets a bit better and then it gets a bit worse.
Full flexion straight on or in something like Virasana doesn’t hurt. It’s just when I bring my foot and lower leg inside of my thing/femur.
Finally, during lunch today, I thought maybe I ought to see why this is. (Pretty smart, huh?) And I bet you know where that took me:
YogAnatomy.com. And there I found this:
There are two movements that when combined would put the most amount of pressure on the medial meniscus. The two movements are flexion of the knee and internal (medial) rotation of the tibia. In lotus both the femur and the tibia have to rotate externally. If the tibia doesn’t have enough outward rotation, there still could be enough in the hip to make up for it, or vice versa. If however both the tibia and the femur lack in their ability to do external rotation then what you have is more internal rotation, which by itself can put pressure onto the medial meniscus. When you combine this with the knee being flexed, as it is in lotus you end up with even more pressure on the medial meniscus.
I don’t even have to do the test. I know that’s the issue. I’ve seen how, in lotus, my right knee gets no where near the floor.
The question, now, is whether I’m satisfied that all that’s happening is my medial meniscus is getting compressed. Or is it something more (aka a tear)? My guess — and seemingly everyone else’s, from yoga teachers to doctors — is that’s all it is. It doesn’t hurt all the time and, again, it is a very specific movement to pain dynamic.
This particular “stiffness” is proving very hard to undo, though.
And that’s today’s lesson from this infuriating practice.
Posted by Steve