Whether you’re a running novice or you’ve made running a part of your daily routine; it’s no secret that foot conditions of any kind can put a damper on your favorite activity. Nothing causes more problems for runners than avoidable and common running injuries.
There are many types of running injuries, all caused by a variety of scenarios. While some may be inevitable, some can be avoided if you’re careful and aware. Below are some of the most common running injuries and their causes:
- Plantar fasciitis occurs when the small tendons and ligaments on the foot have small tears or inflammation. In runners, plantar fasciitis happens when the force absorbed by the foot coming down in a run is too much to be sustained.
- Achilles Tendinitis is an injury to the Achilles tendon, which connects the two calf muscles with the back of the heel. In runners, this is often the result of a rapid increase in running frequency.
- Iliotibial Band Syndrome happens when the iliotibial band, which runs between the knee and the hip bone, rubs against the femur, causing friction and irritation on the outside of the knee. In runners, this injury is especially painful when the heel connects with the ground.
- Runner’s Knee, also known as patellofemoral pain syndrome, occurs when the cartilage under the kneecap is irritated. This is commonly a result of overuse.
Other common injuries include: Shin splints, hamstring problems and stress fractures.
How to prevent painful foot conditions while running
It is absolutely critical that runners take care of their feet to avoid injury and worsening of any condition. Foot pain symptoms can appear at any point, for any reason, and it’s important to be aware in order to prevent any serious issues. Avoiding injury is one of the easiest things you can do to ensure that you’re enjoying your running routine with no problems. Here are some cautionary measures to take:
- Warm up and stretch, but don’t overdo it. Overstretching can put a strain on some of your tendons and muscles resulting in injury.
- Don’t let running be the only thing you do. In order for you to enjoy running more, it’s important to incorporate strength training. The stronger your body’s muscles and ligaments are, the less prone to injury you will be.
- Get the right shoes for you. The importance of using the right gear in your running regimen cannot be overstated. It is vital for runners to use the proper footwear to protect against shock, high impact and stress fractures. Proper footwear will also allow you to maintain a good running posture and stay comfortable for longer.
- Run in a variety of terrains to minimize injury. Also, be aware of the type of terrain you’ll be running in and consider whether or not it should be part of your routine. Sandy terrain, for example, is uneven and unstable, which can cause problems and injury, whereas a synthetic track can help those who need a smooth surface to run.
If you do injure your foot, it’s important to seek foot pain treatment immediately to prevent any permanent damage. Foot conditions can be debilitating for runners, but with the right plan of action to avoid injury, they do not have to signify the end of a cherished exercise routine.