A running injury can affect anyone, whether you have many years of experience or you are a newbie to running. Regardless of your injury make sure that you listen to your body and donִ run if you are in pain and once you are fully recovered you can kick-start your running again.
Here is a guide to five of the most common running injuries:
Runnerֳ knee or knee pain is the most common type of running injury and has a range of causes including swelling underneath the knee cap. To help treat this knee injury, apply an ice pack for around 20 minutes several times a day.
Running on a regular basis can cause wear and tear to the Achilles tendon (this is the tough cord at the back of the ankle which connects the muscle to the bone). To treat Achilles pain at home it is recommended that you apply an ice pack and you can also massage the area with your fingers. Make sure you get plenty of rest until the pain goes away.
Shin pain or shin splints is a dull pain that occurs on the front of the leg, many runners will often keep on running but this can cause more damage to the area, which can sometimes lead to a sharp pain that comes on suddenly. Again, an ice pack is an effective way to relieve the pain and if the area is swollen or the pain is severe make sure you visit your GP.
If you suddenly start doing a lot more running than normal or if your running shoes donִ provide enough support, pain or swelling in the bottom of the foot can occur, which can feel like someone is sticking a sharp object in your heel. The medical name for heel pain is plantar fasciitis. Applying an ice pack for five to ten minutes and doing several stretches can help with heel pain. If heel pain is treated quickly enough it usually goes away within two to three weeks.
Muscles strains very often affect new runners, and the most common muscle strain is in the hamstring muscles (these run down the back of your thigh). Muscle strain happens suddenly so make sure you immediately stop running and apply an ice pack as soon as possible to the area. Also, keep your leg elevated and support it with a pillow or cushion to reduce the swelling.
Follow these simple steps for preventing injury:
- Make sure you wear the correct running shoes.
- Ensuring that you warm up properly before running will warm up your muscles, which helps to prevent injury.
- Cooling down is important too; run at a slower pace or walk for five to ten minutes.
- Build up your running distance slowly and do the same kind of distance three or four times before increasing pace or distance.
Author: Liz Robinson