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Athletes who regularly use repetitive movements such as tennis players or footballers are at higher risk of developing tendon injuries. However, injury can also happen to people through trivial activities such as lifting or carrying a heavy object.

Older adults may be at higher risk due to falls or being overweight which put more stress on the lower joints.

Tendon injury

Patellar tendinitis (jumper's knee)

Patellar tendinitis is an injury that affects the tendon connecting your knee cap (patella) to your shinbone. The patellar tendon helps your muscles extend your lower leg so that you can kick a ball, pedal your bicycle and jump up in the air.


  • Commonly known as jumper's knee, patellar tendinitis is most common in athletes who are involved in frequent jumping, running or kicking.
  • Patellar tendinitis is a common overuse injury as a result of repeated stress on your patellar tendon. The stress results in tears in the tendon that, as they become more numerous, cause inflammation in the tendon.


  • Knee pain is the first symptom of patellar tendinitis. It worsens with physical activity.
  • Knee pain is usually relieved with rest but may be persistent in severe cases.
  • Swelling may be present.


  • Usually made on case history and clinical examination.


  • The conservative approach to treating patellar tendinitis aims to reduce strain on the tendon and to gradually build up the tendon's strength.
  • Your doctor may suggest that you avoid running and jumping and recommend physiotherapy to stretch the tendon and quadriceps, with the aim of returning to your previous level of exercise intensity.
  • Medications to reduce pain, swelling and inflammation may also be given.
  • A patellar tendon strap that applies pressure to your patellar tendon to distribute force away from the tendon may be given to relieve knee pain.

Read the next page for knee injuries to the cartilage (meniscus and articular).

See the previous page to learn about injuries to the anterior cruciate (ACL) and posterior cruciate (PCL) ligaments.

Ref: S13

Also, check out our other articles on pain of the leg and feet:

Knee Osteoarthritis (OA Knee): Symptoms, Tips, Treatment and Exercises

Home Remedies for Knee Pain and Shin Splints

Runner's Knee: What It Is and How to Prevent

Tips to Prevent Common Running Injuries

How to Choose The Right Knee and Ankle Braces

Have Heel Pain? It Could Be Plantar Fasciitis