Your Patella on the Move

When your leg is on the move, your patella is on the move, too. It slides up and down its track on the thigh bone. But if your patella slides “off track” — even just a little – it can result in pain and damages to your knee.

When Your Patella Is “On Track”

Think of your patella as a puppet controlled by strings. Its “strings” are your quadriceps muscles, retinacula, and patellar tendon. If these “strings” all pull in just the right way, your patella stays in place and glides easily in its track.

When all “strings” pull correctly, pressure is spread evenly on the back of the patella.

When Your Patella Gets “Off Track”

If any of your patella’s “strings” pull too hard or not hard enough, your patella gets “off track.” That means it is not aligned. It no longer glides easily against the thigh bone. Movement may be painful and hard to do. The patella may also get damaged.

When some “strings” pull incorrectly, pressure is spread unevenly on the back of the patella.