Posted on August 7, 2014
Whether you are gearing up for the Albany Half Marathon or just hoping for a short jog around the track, running can often highlight a small malalignment or inefficiency in your stride or body mechanics that you may never have noticed before. These small problems can often turn into big problems – pain or injury that may stop you from running or training.
One common site for injury or pain is the knee – up to 20% of running injuries are at the knee! Women are especially prone to knee pain due to common anatomical differences and muscular imbalances. A PT can identify these issues and help you correct them, eliminating extra stress on the knee. If you are under 30, risk increases for stress fractures. Runners over the age of 40 are more prone to achilles tendon injuries – but runners of all ages can be at risk for plantar fasciitis, achilles tendinitis or foot pain if they are running in the wrong shoes.
How can you avoid injury? A quick warm up before exercise is more beneficial than spending a few minutes stretching (save that for after your run!). If you’ve been having pain (even a small pain that only ranks 1 or 2 on a scale of 1-10) with running, listen to your body! Something isn’t right and a change needs to be made – this is where PT comes into play with a thorough evaluation.
Now this post hasn’t been designed to try and scare you from running – it is a great form of exercise and stress release as long as you address trouble areas in your gait, muscles, and equipment. Physical therapists are trained to evaluate your running stride, shoes, and strength. We can help determine what may be causing the pain you have and prevent it from getting worse. Don’t let a small pain turn into a nagging injury – running through pain is never the answer! We’re here to help – call to schedule your running evaluation today.
– Erin Bell, DPT