Just because we are able to run doesn’t make us great runners. For a number of reasons, many runners develop injuries each year. Running injuries typically occur when you push yourself too hard or how your body moves. Whether a runner’s goal is to improve his or her time, increase speed or stay fit, it’s essential to maintain correct form to prevent injury. That’s why the role of physical therapy plays a large piece in a runner’s world! Physical therapists can advise runners on proper form, training methods, strategies for preventing injuries, and proper shoe selection and work with them to develop a plan, tailored to their specific needs, for successful running. This can be called a Running Evaluation (further explained by Brian Jones, PT, and Owner of HealthQuest Physical Therapy Plesant Ridge). Not to mention we can evaluate, diagnose and treat runners who have sustained a running-related injury.
Common Running-Related Injuries Physical Therapy Treats
Running injuries are common and often affect the hips, knees, ankles, and feet of runners. The impact and stress of running is sometimes hard on the muscles and joints; especially if you ignore early injury signs.
- Plantar fasciitis
- Achilles Tendonitis and Insertional Achilles Tendinopathy
- Shin splints
- Patella Tendonitis
- High Hamstring Tendinopathy
- Stress fractures
- Runner’s Knee
- IT Band Injuries
- Groin Strain
- Hamstring Injuries
- Iliotibial Band Syndrome (ITBS)
- Knee Pain
- Patellofemoral Pain
- Osgood Schlatter’s
- Sinding-Larsen-Johansson Disease
- Meniscus tears
Why Do Runners Get Injured So Easily?
At any one time, approximately 25% of runners will have an injury. Most of the time it comes down to a change in workload. Given enough time, our bodies are very good at adapting to increased workload. If we gradually increase the distances that we run, the muscle, tendon, and bone cells can respond to this increased workload and increase their ‘strength’ and endurance. If, however, we increase this workload too quickly, these structures start to break down.
Changes in workload can be due to a change in:
- Distance / time / intensity of training
- Terrain, eg more hills, harder ground
- Running technique
Don’t wait until you’re injured to see a physical therapist
We know that running gives many people joy, but it should not give you pain. Running keeps you fit and weight down, it clears your mind, it works your body, among many things that are great. We also know how much an injury can slow you down, both physically and mentally that’s why we are here…not only when your injured but to PREVENT INJURY! Schedule a free assessment and let a physical therapist see how you move and see how we can help you stay running, injury-free!