We’ve all been there – ‘growing pains’ as it was often described.  But did you know it could be more than that? It may be Osgood Schaltters Disease.

Osgood what?! 

The name may sounds confusing but its actually one of the most common causes of knee pain in children aged from 9 to 15 years old. Girls tend to be affected younger than boys do.

This doesn’t affect all children but it is often seen is those participate in lots of high impact sport involving running and jumping and who have gone through a recent growth spurt.


When and where does it hurt?

  • Pain at the front of the knee
  • Feels worse during sport or running
  • Limping after exercise
  • Feels better with rest
  • Tenderness and swelling at the top of the shin bone (tibial tuberosity)


What’s actually happening in the knee?

Children have a growth plate in the front of the knee, which is located on that bump below your kneecap. After 

a growth spurt often the bones grow faster than the muscles / tendons causing tightness and

 pressure on this area. The pulling tendon at the growth plate is what causes the inflammation

and pain.

(USE ABOVE )Image from https://www.globalsourcemedical.com/osgood-schlatter-disease/


What can make it feel better?

  • Icing over the pain and or swollen area
  • Rest! The pain will often settle down by avoiding the painful activities like running
  • Avoid pressure over the painful area, e.g. no kneeling 


How can physio help?

  • Exercise and strengthening to support knee
  • Soft tissue therapy 
  • Taping
  • Improvement of motor control
  • Orthotic prescription if needed
  • Advice 
    • Do I have to stop doing sport? 
    • How can I manage while continuing sport? 
    • Will sport make it worse? 
    • Could it be something else causing the pain?


How long could it hurt for?

  • GOOD NEWS! – Symptoms decline and go away once the growth spurt has settled down
  • This could take up to 2 years meaning physio can help lots to manage pain and symptoms during this time and hopefully keep them playing the sport they enjoy!