Running is a great way to burn calories, release endorphins, and improve your cardiovascular health. It can be a healthy activity to do with friends and loved ones, and many enjoy the thrill of competing in races of various lengths. While the number of benefits one can gain from running is vast, so is the number of injuries that may come along with it – especially when covering longer distances. Running injuries are the result of different factors, which include not stretching properly, insufficient footwear, or possible musculoskeletal problems. These injuries can potentially put a stop to running and cause further damage if not cared for properly. Below are some of the most common running injuries, and how you can treat and prevent them so you can get back on track.
1. Runner’s Knee
What is commonly referred to as “runner’s knee” is actually patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS), and it is irritation of the cartilage beneath the kneecap. This irritation may be due to biomechanical factors such as over pronation (excessive rolling in of the foot), and weak hips, quadriceps, and glute muscles. If you are experiencing this pain, it is best to decrease the amount of running, or taking a break altogether if the pain persists. While on your hiatus, work on strengthening the surrounding musculature of the hip, glutes, and quadriceps. Look into alternate forms of cardio such as the elliptical or swimming until you are ready to hit the pavement again.