If you run or would like to, it is important to make sure your running style is not asymmetric or out of balance in order to avoid running with a dysfunctional stride that will lead to injury. If you have Running Injuries that alters your stride, the way you land or push off, or if you need to take pain meds before or after running, there’s a good chance you’re doing more damage to your body.
Runners often suffer from overuse of their muscles, tendons, or ligaments. When the muscles, tendons, or ligaments are overworked, the tissue experiences damage in the form of microscopic tears. This may occur when completing an exercise that the body is not used to, or repeating dysfunctional patterns due to imbalances in your body. At Central Park Physical Therapy, we will identify your running stride dysfunctions and correct them to avoid future injury.
For more information on how you can prevent severe injuries, contact Central Park Physical Therapy today.
What are some common injuries?
At Central Park Physical Therapy, our licensed therapists can guide you through proper exercises, stretches, movements, and body control, in order to prevent future injuries from occurring. Many injuries occur due to improper techniques or overexerting your body. Some of the most commonly sustained injuries include:
Inflammation and pain in the tendons and muscles of the lower leg. Shin splints typically occur from overuse of the anterior tibialis muscle that may be caused by improper footwear.
Also known as patellofemoral pain syndrome, this condition generally refers to the breakdown of cartilage under the kneecap. It could also be related to improper patella tracking and inflammation of the quadriceps tendon or patellar ligament.
This is an injury that occurs in the cord that attaches to the heel and often results in pain and swelling. Running in improperly fit, worn down, or poor quality shoes is one potential cause of this condition.
The plantar fascia is a band of connective tissue that runs on the bottom of your foot and helps with strengthening your arch to provide a proper push-off when walking or running.. Plantar fasciitis is inflammation of this connective tissue. With this injury you can feel pain throughout the arch or the heel.
Pain in the front of the hip is common when running on a different surface or using an improperly fit pair of shoes.
Hip pain also commonly occurs on the outside of the hip, an area called the greater trochanter (which actually isn’t your hip at all). This can be caused by overworked abductor or hip rotator muscles leading to tightening, tendinopathy, or bursitis.
Lower Back Pain
Lower back pain from running is commonly caused by a dysfunctional stride that may result in landing too hard causing an increased ground reaction force up your leg to your back, causing compression of your lower vertebrae.
How can I prevent these injuries?
While it is always a wise decision to consult with a physiotherapist, there are some tips you can implement into your personal life as well, in order to decrease your risk of sustaining an injury. These include:
This is one of the easiest ways to prevent injuries. Your tissues require water in order to be elastic, and proper stretching helps to bring water into the tissues. This increases joint mobility and muscle elasticity and reverses stiffness.
Hydrating and eating nutritious meals.
Did you know that your body is over 70% water? Because of this, it requires water in order to remain supple and function properly. Without adequate water and nutrition, your body’s tissues are more prone to over-stretching and injury. Make sure you drink the recommended 8 glasses of water a day, and a few extra on hot & humid days.
Staying within your abilities.
It is important to train and practice for any physical activity you’d like to try. Start small in the beginning and build up from there. For example, if you aren’t used to running but you’d like to complete a 5k, don’t start off with 3-mile runs. Begin with a half mile and slowly build up. When you push your body past its current limits, you make yourself more prone to injuries because your body is not prepared for the physical demands being asked of it. A physical therapist can help you safely progress to reach your physical goals.
Using the proper equipment.
When engaging in any type of physical activity, it is important to make sure you have the right equipment. For example, properly fit running shoes or hiking boots can help you avoid injury and stay safe while doing the activities you enjoy.
What should I do now?
If you think you may have a running injury, or you’d like to learn more about injury prevention, contact Central Park Physical Therapy today. One of our dedicated physical therapists will assess your options and help you remain active and pain-free!