Running Injuries and Prevention

With Spring on the way, people can't wait to get outside again and start being active. People are starting the Spring sports season and getting back into shape. Are you an active runner? Then maybe your muscles will start feeling the pain as you start working out again. If you are in pain or are feeling sore, then you need to find out if you have an injury, what kind it is and how you can reduce or prevent further injury from happening.

Here is a list of common injuries caused by running:

Shin Splint:

Pain in the front or inside of the lower leg along the shin bone (tibia). Shin splints occur after a change in activity, such as running farther or increasing the number of days you run. 

      Most likely to get shin splints: People with flat feet.
         1. Rest
         2. Stretch
         3. Slow down activity after healing.

Muscle Pull:

This is a small muscle tear caused by over-stretching the muscle. You may feel a popping sensation as it tears. Hamstrings, quadriceps and calf are most commonly affected.

         1. Rest
         2. Ice
         3. Compression
         4. Elevation

Plantar Fasciitis:

This is an inflammation of the plantar fascia which is the thick band of tissue in the bottom of the foot that extends from the heel to the toes. It may occur due to increased activity, but may occur with no identifiable reason.

         1. Calf stretches
         2. Ice the bottom of the foot

Iliotibial band syndrome (ITBS):

This syndrome causes pain on the outside of the knee. It is a ligament that runs along the outside of the thigh, from the top of the hip to the outside of the knee and occurs when the ligament thickens and rubs on the knee bone, causing inflammation. If you run long distance, you have a higher chance of developing ITBS.

         1. Decrease amount of exercise
         2. Heat and stretching before exercise
         3. Ice after exercise

Achilles Tendinitis:

This is inflammation of the Achilles tendon. This is the large tendon that attaches the calf to the back of the heel. You will know you have this if there is pain and stiffness in the area of the tendon or tight calf muscles. It is caused by repetitive stress due to increasing running distance.

         1. Rest
         2. Icing the area
         3. Calf stretches

Tips to Prevent these Injuries:

By taking precaution, you can prevent these common injuries.
  • Listen to your body: Don't ignore pain. If there is consistent pain that doesn't get better with rest, see your health care provider. 
  • Create a running plan: Talking to a trainer will help you make a plan right for you and how much fitness you can handle.
  • Warm-up and stretch: Do this before and after exercise. (Especially your calf, hamstrings, and quadriceps)
  • Wear proper shoes! Wear proper-fitting socks and shoes with good support. If  the soles of your current running shoes are worn thin, it's time to get a new pair! (Here at Rogan's of course!)