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Top 4 Running Injuries That Physiotherapists Manage

Running is an excellent full-body workout that has numerous health benefits. Not only does running improve your physical condition, particularly cardiovascular health, but it also benefits mental health and clarity.

Like any form of exercise, running has an associated injury risk. Running is a repetitive, high-impact motion that can jar the body, place strain on the muscles and unfortunately lead to overuse injuries.

Physiotherapists are experts in the structure and function of the musculoskeletal system. They work with professional and recreational runners who have sustained an injury or want to improve their body’s condition to boost performance.

Your physio will complete a thorough assessment, diagnosis and treatment program to ensure you return fitter and stronger than before your injury.

Below are four of the most common ‘runners injuries’ treated by physios. If you suspect you have an injury, visit your local physio for treatment and prevent further damage to the affected area.

 

  1. Shin Splints

All regular runners have probably heard of or experienced shin splints at some point in their journey. There are a group of muscles surrounding the tibia (shin bone) that tear if exposed to repetitive jumping and impact. These painful microtears are common and are likely to flare up if you recommence running after some time off.

Treatment for shin splints includes lots of rest and ice. While it may be frustrating and interrupt your plans, you must allow the body time to heal from shin splints. When returning to running, your physio will prescribe a physical treatment plan that boosts recovery and prevents recurring injury. This may include massage, taping, stretches, exercises, or a change to your running style or running shoes.

 

  1. Runner’s Knee

Almost half of all running-related injuries are located in the knee. Runner’s Knee, clinically known as Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome, is the most common condition. It occurs due to irritation in the cartilage under the patella (kneecap). The aching pain is made worse by squatting movements.

To treat Runner’s Knee, your physio is likely to recommend exercises that strengthen your upper legs and thighs. These will take the pressure off your knees and ensure your body is better prepared for repetitive, high-impact motions like running.

 

  1. Achilles Tendinopathy

The Achilles tendon attaches your calf muscle to your heel and can rupture during injury. Achilles Tendinopathy occurs when the tendon becomes tight and irritated, causing pain and disrupting typical movement.

Treatment for Achilles Tendinopathy usually involves rest, ice and anti-inflammatory medication. To prepare your body to return to running, your physio may recommend stretching and strengthening exercises.

 

  1. Plantar Fasciitis

Most runners are familiar with the frustration of having sore feet during a run. Plantar fasciitis is a common injury that is often referred to as heel pain. It occurs when inflammation and small tears appear in the tendons connecting the ball of the foot and the heel.

Your physiotherapist will use a range of treatments to reduce the discomfort caused by plantar fasciitis. Orthotics may be recommended to support your arches and correct foot, ankle and leg positioning.

 

Visit your physiotherapist if you have a running or sports injury

 

If you have sustained a running injury, visit your local physio at NDPE for quality care. We will help you to diagnose and treat your condition for optimal recovery. Book your appointment today!

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