Running has many benefits. It can help to build strong bones, strengthen your muscles, improve your cardiovascular fitness, and help you to maintain a healthy weight. It can even benefit your mental wellbeing. So, it is a good idea to get into running. However, before you do so, it is important you are aware of common running injuries you could experience. You will then know how to treat them, or even prevent the injuries from occurring in the first place.
It is important you understand your gait and how it can affect your joints. If you do not properly understand your own running mechanics, you could potentially be prone to more running injuries. Your gait is basically how you move on foot. To best get to know your running gait, visit a specialty running store where a professional can analyze your form while you run on a treadmill. By getting to know your gait, you can better avoid running issues like underpronation. The condition happens when most of the impact is concentrated on the outer part of the foot when you run. It typically affects runners with high arches. Instead of your arch normally flexing and absorbing some of the force, it is too rigid to do that. Instead, your foot would roll to the side and bear more of the brunt of the running force. You can avoid the condition by getting advice on your gait and buying running shoes for underpronation that give the right amount of support and cushioning to absorb the impact of running.
Runner’s knee, which is medically known as patellofemoral pain syndrome, is a dull ache or pain underneath your kneecap. It is a common condition felt when running, especially when you run uphill. Beginners will particularly experience runner’s knee. It happens when the cartilage under your kneecap and your thigh bone start rubbing together, which causes the pain. If you get a runner’s knee and do not manage it correctly, it can potentially progress into a more severe injury. If you get a runner’s knee, do not try to run through it. Instead, you should initially stop running and take over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications like ibuprofen. You can potentially prevent a runner’s knee from occurring in the first place by doing hip and core exercises before you begin running. You will gain more strength and pain resolution against the runner’s knee if you complete around six weeks of core and strength training before you start running regularly.
If you experience a little stiffness on the bottom of your foot near the heel, you probably have plantar fasciitis. The pain will typically go away as you get into your run and the stiffness will usually return at the end of a run. If you experience it first thing in the morning when you get out of bed, it can be very painful, but it can go away after you have taken around fifteen to thirty steps. Plantar fasciitis is caused by the thick band of connective tissue along the sole of your foot from the toes to the heel becoming overly stretched. It stretches every time your foot comes down. When there is too much tension, it can cause inflammation and irritation. Also, because the tissue is connected to many other parts of your foot and leg, other things can contribute to plantar fasciitis, like flat feet, weakness of the core or hips, nerve irritation in the lower back, and poor control of pelvic positioning. If you get plantar fasciitis, you can treat it by stretching and raising your heel. A good arch support can also take the load off. Those ways of treating plantar fasciitis can also be good for preventing the condition in the first place.