Top 3 Most Common Running Injuries

Top 3 Most Common Running Injuries

Running offers incredible benefits for your physical and mental well-being, but it also poses some risks, particularly when it comes to injuries. If you’re new to running, it’s important to be aware of the injuries you could encounter if you start out too hard or don't take time to stretch or prepare. 


So before you hit the pavement, do a little research on the most common running injuries, figure out how to prevent them, and keep your body safe. 

Runner's Knee (Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome)

Runner’s knee is basically just pain around the knee cap and while it’s most often caused by running (hence the name) its main cause is overuse, poor alignment of the kneecap, or muscle imbalances. Running simply aggravates these conditions. Runner's knee will cause discomfort and swelling, especially during or after running.


You could also experience runner’s knee from:

  • Going up or down stairs
  • Squatting
  • Kneeling
  • Sitting for a long time with the knee bent

You can treat runner’s knee with rest, ice, compression and elevation. 

Shin Splints

Shin splints refer to pain along the shinbone (tibia), typically felt on the front or inner part of the lower leg. It’s most common to feel this at the start of an activity or right after. Shin splints are commonly caused by repetitive stress on the muscles, tendons, and bone tissue around the shin. 


If you’re new to running you might experience shin splints because they often occur due to sudden changes in running intensity, running on hard surfaces, or inadequate footwear. So, don’t just jump into an intense running regimen. Start small and work your way up and make sure your shoes offer the right support. You might consider adding an insole for proper shock absorption as you start your running routine! 


If you do experience shin splints, the best thing to do is just take a break. Your muscles and tendons will need rest so don’t push through the pain because overuse will only make it worse. 


Achilles Tendinitis

This injury involves inflammation of the Achilles tendon, which connects the calf muscles to the heel bone. It is the largest tendon in the body so if it gets injured, it’s a big deal. This injury can develop  gradually due to overuse or repetitive stress on the tendon. It’s a prevalent injury for runners especially if you overpronate or if your feet are weak or tired. 


Achilles tendinitis can cause pain and stiffness in the back of the ankle and lower leg. It is frequently found in runners who increase their mileage or intensity too quickly or do not adequately stretch and strengthen their calf muscles. So just like with shin splints, if you’re new to running, start slow and easy. 


You can treat an Achilles tendon injury with the 3S’s—Strengthening, Stretching, and Supporting. Add Ice and rest and you’ve got the simplest form of treating an injured Achilles.


Preventing Running Injuries

To prevent some of these common running injuries, you should consider the following tips: 

Don’t let injuries take you down or prevent you from enjoying other activities in your life. Simply be aware of the possibilities and take the proper precautions before and after your run!

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