What are running injuries? 8 Common running injuries
Running can be very taxing on your body. Even though you may experience minor aches and discomforts, being sidelined by a running injury is not something any runner would want. It can be difficult to determine what is causing a problem if it bothers you.
For runners of all abilities, running injuries can be frustrating and difficult. These injuries can be mild to severe, and affect different parts of your body such as the feet, knees and hips.
What are running Injuries?
Running injuries can be injuries to muscles, ligaments and tendons that result from repetitive running motions. These injuries are also known as overload or overuse injuries. They can happen for many reasons.
Overuse injuries are distinct from injuries that result from running or a fall, and can cause acute trauma. There are many factors that can cause running injuries, such as overuse, poor form, improper footwear and muscle imbalances.
Running injuries can also be caused by improper footwear. Shoes that don’t fit well or provide sufficient support can lead to injury. If you have flat feet, and you wear shoes that don’t support your arch, you could be more susceptible to injuries such as Achilles tendonitis or plantar fasciitis.
To avoid injury, it is important that you listen to your body. To reduce injury risk, stretch before and after running, wear appropriate footwear, and combine strength training with yoga and other activities.
Now let us quickly dive into the common running injuries that you must be aware of!
8 Common Running Injuries:
1. Runner’s knee
A Runner’s knee is the most common injury suffered by runners. This is an irritation between the patella and the undersides of the kneecap. It is most common when you run up and down hills or use stairs (especially when coming down).
There are many possible causes for runner’s knee. The most common is muscle or structural imbalances that cause the patella not to track correctly (mal-tracking). Another common cause is tight muscles, such as the quadriceps that attach to the patella.
2. Achilles Tendinitis
Technically speaking, Achilles tendinitis refers to inflammation of the tendon running down the back of your lower leg just above your heel bone.
Recent research has shown that the inflammation process is not as severe or short-lived. This research has led to an active approach that reduces the strain on the tendon and promotes strengthening.
The symptoms usually start with an aching sensation and tenderness when you pinch the tendon. Sometimes, there will be a thickening. You may feel stiffness and pain in the morning. This will lessen as you gently move around.
Achilles tendinitis can occur from a variety of reasons, including improper footwear or poor training such as running on uneven ground or a large increase in your mileage.
3. Iliotibial Band Syndrome (ITBS)
The Iliotibial Band is a fibrous, thick band of connective tissue that runs along the outside of your thigh. It attaches to your knee from the outside and originates in your gluteal muscles.
The ITB, along with the gluteus medius muscles, is important in running to stabilize the leg during the stance phase.
ITBS is more common in long-distance runners. It often causes pain around the knee. It can be caused by weakness in the gluteus medius, or running on bumpy roads.
4. Plantar Fasciitis
The plantar fascia is a fibrous thick band running underneath the foot from the heel up to the toes. It is responsible for providing strength, stability, and shock absorption to your foot during the stance phase of running. The medial arch of your foot is also maintained by the plantar Fascia.
Plantar fasciitis is most commonly caused by sudden increases in running mileage, changes to the running surface (e.g., running on astroturf or wearing the wrong shoes).
You can feel pain anywhere on the foot’s underside, but it is more common in the area around the heel.
5. Patellar Tendinitis
The patellar tendon is located on the patellae (knee cap), and inserts into the bony prominence known as the tibial tuberosity, approximately 3 cm below it. It serves a similar function to a pulley system, providing a stronger lever for the quadriceps muscles.
If the athlete’s training involves a lot of jumping or plyometrics, this is more likely to be a running injury than a training injury. The injury can also be caused by excessive kicks in team sports or jumping sports such as basketball. Running can become difficult if the tendon becomes inflamed, especially if you are running down hills or stairs.
This condition is usually diagnosed by tenderness and pain at the base of the patellae. It is usually caused by pain while jumping, but it can also occur during running or other everyday activities.
6. Shin Splints & Stress Fracture
Shin splints can be described as a broad term that covers a variety of conditions that affect the tibia bone (shinbone). The most common bone injuries for runners are medial tibial stress fractures and tibial stress fractures. It can be hard to tell the difference, but it is important that you get your symptoms correctly diagnosed if you feel pain around the tibial bone. These injuries can cause you to stop running for several months if they are not treated properly.
A mild ache on the shin or in the muscles near the shin is the first sign of injury. This usually occurs at the end of a run, and it overpowers you when you rest.
7. Lower back pain
Running can cause back pain, but it isn’t an overuse injury. Back pain is a common problem for runners, so it’s worth mentioning.
Poor running technique or posture can lead to lower back pain. Back pain is more common in runners who are heavier.
Most cases of back pain while running can be solved by adding some specific exercises to your exercise routine.
8. Stress fractures
Stress fractures can cause persistent pain. Usually, it is in the shin but sometimes in the foot, hip, or pelvis. Stress fractures can be treated in the same way as shin splint injury. Stress fractures can be more severe than shin-splint injuries and require serious management.
Some runners might need to be immobilized with a walking boot, or crutches to allow their stress fractures to heal. If the stress fracture is severe or in an area at high risk, surgery may be necessary. Cardiovascular training should not be weight-bearing, such as swimming.
proper training, shoe maintenance, and not running on hard surfaces are the best ways to prevent stress fractures. If you think you may have suffered a stress fracture while training, you must consult a Chronic Pain Specialist.
The bottom line
Many runners have to deal with injuries at one time or another. Running can cause injuries to your knees, legs and feet.
Apart from all these, you can also recover from common to severe injuries by our amazing and very own COPA Therapy.
Schedule an appointment with us now!