Running can benefit a person’s physical and mental health in various ways. This exercise can help you maintain a healthy weight, tone your muscles, lift your mood, boost your self-esteem, and improve cognition.
Running as little as once a week can work wonders for your mind and body. However, like any exercise, you can experience one or more injuries when running indoors or outdoors.
Keep reading to learn about three common running injuries and the best solutions.
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Runner’s knee is an overuse injury that affects the kneecap and its surrounding area. Those with weak hips or knee muscles will have a higher likelihood of experiencing the injury.
Painful symptoms can include a dull ache in one or both knees or pain that is worse when jumping, squatting, climbing stairs, or sitting or exercising for long periods. Also, you may hear popping or cracking sounds after prolonged sitting.
If you suspect you have runner’s knee, you must visit a doctor for a physical examination, and they may recommend an x-ray. If you have runner’s knee, a physical therapist can devise a customized treatment plan to help you make a quick and full recovery.
2. Shin Splints
Shin splints, also known as medial tibial stress syndrome, is a pain that strikes the front or inner areas of the lower leg along the shin bone (tibia). The injury tends to occur when a person changes their workout, runs long distances, increases their running speed too quickly, runs across a hard surface, or runs for too many days in a row. The pain is like a shin stress fracture but may feel more spread across the shin bone.
Rest can help you gradually recover from shin splints. Of course, prevention is better than cure, which is why you should wear a calf support for runners. The comfortable fibers will not distract you during exercise and will provide support and protection around the joint and surrounding tissue during physical activity.
3. Achilles Tendinopathy
Achilles tendinopathy, once known as tendinitis, is inflammation caused by changes to an Achilles tendon, which connects your heel and calf muscle. The injury may occur when increasing your running intensity or mileage.
Symptoms of Achilles tendinopathy can include pain, burning, or stiffness in the lower leg by your heel, as well as swelling, poor range of motion, or a warm sensation.
It is essential to seek treatment for Achilles tendinopathy, as it will increase your risk of an Achilles tendon rupture that may require surgery. If you suspect you have Achilles tendinopathy, you must rest your leg and heel, ice the painful area, and perform various calf stretches.
The above injuries are common for runners but can be avoided by wearing supportive products and footwear during exercise. If an injury does strike, rest is often the best course of action, but you shouldn’t hesitate to visit a doctor for treatment and to prevent further damage.