Did you know that approximately 36,000 are hospitalised every year due to injuries sustained during sports including running? Yep! And these aren’t statistics for professionals either. In runners, whether you’re a recreational runner wanting to get a little more fit or a competitive runner training for your next event, up to 70% of all runners will sustain an overuse injury in any given 12-month period.
This is exactly the reason that our rehab-focused Podiatrists, Justin and John, are attending the Victoria State Symposium on the “secrets to injury-proofing runners” in a few weeks on February 24th. We see too many patients come in with painful injuries – and perhaps even worse – the inability to continue pursuing the goals that had them running in the first place.
While we plan to give you a full update of all of the wonderful things that the team are going to learn after the symposium, we thought we’d start with some practical tips that you can start implementing today to increase your safety during running.
Avoid hard surfaces like concrete when running until you’re able to get the pain and aches sorted. Opt for softer and even surfaces instead. Having tired, achy or painful legs at the end of a normal day tells us that the biomechanics of your feet and legs may not be working optimally to help absorb the shock and stresses on your feet during your regular daily activities. Adding the impact forces from running on hard and rather unforgiving surfaces will only amplify the stress and shock to your already vulnerable bones and put you at risk of developing an injury.
As they will support and facilitate the movements your feet and legs make during this activity, adding the right level of stability for things like reducing the risk of ankle sprains as you move.
We recommend bringing your old runners into the store with you when it comes time to purchase a new pair, because seeing the wear patterns on your old pair can tell a LOT about your running style and the support you need. The same goes for your Podiatrist – bring them in to us for your appointments too!
The risk of injury is much higher if you attempt to run 10k on your first day of training (having not really ‘run’ before), than if you start with 2km’s and build it up to 10km over the next few weeks. More than that, as soon as you overdo it, you’ll get all the aches and pains that will halt your training (and normal sitting and standing, for that matter) in its tracks and put a damper on your goals and progress.
Pain is not a natural part of exercise. It is not normal to experience pain after exercise. When you do, it’s your body’s way of telling you that something hasn’t gone quite right, something has been overloaded, something has been stressed past what it can handle, and in result, you’ve caused a physical pain response.
When this happens, stop doing the activity that caused the pain and let your body rest and recover. If you don’t, not only will the pain not get better but it can get worse – and end up taking weeks (if not months) of recovery). See a health professional, take care of yourself, and recover well!
And as anyone who lifts weights can attest, is the difference between effectively building strength and pulling (or even tearing) a muscle and ending up with weeks of rehab to regain the functional capacity.
Get your running technique assessed. It’s an investment in your long-term well-being and injury prevention. You’ll know what to do and why. You’ll improve your output. You’ll be able to identify if something is going wrong before it turns into an injury. Your body will thank you for it!
We’re all about keeping our patients happy, healthy and pain-free here at Sole Motion Podiatry. If you need help with your running technique, want a pre-running assessment or have developed pain or injury, give our expert team a call on 1300-FX-FEET or book online here.