How to Avoid Running Injuries?
Whilst we love running and highly recommend it for everybody, we also know that running can cause injury if not managed well. Most common areas of injury are to the knee tendons, achilles tendons and the hamstrings tendons (Common Pains & Injuries). We advise that its best to avoid injury in the first place and offer these 5 tips for avoiding running injuries.
1. Plan Your Running
Planning your runs and recovery days early can help with load management. This will reduce the chances of running too much, too soon which minimises the risk of developing an overload running injury. When we continually stress the tendons and their attachments a slight increase in inflammation can result. If you feel a slight bit of discomfort, take a rest day or try specific eccentric exercises.
2. Increase Your Running Load Gradually
An easy way to monitor your load from week-to-week is to keep track of your weekly kilometres. As a general guide, try not to increase load by more than 10% per week. We normally start with 2 runs per week and aim for ~8-10km. The next week would be 2 runs at around 8.8-11km. And slowly increase your running like this.
3. Recover Well
Recovery is one of the most important factors to consider when running. In tendons, for example, it can take up 24-36 hours post-run to strengthen the tissue, therefore, it is essential that you give yourself time to recover, so the tissues can adapt and be stronger for the next run.
It is recommended that you get 7-9 hours of sleep per night. Adequate nutrition and hydration is required to meet the demands of your training. It is best to consult with a qualified nutritionist or dietician to discuss this in further detail.
4. Include Strength & Conditioning
Strength training has been shown to improve running economy and most importantly reduce the incidence of overuse running injuries. The most common areas to strengthen is the calf, quads, and glutes. Try incorporating strength exercises 2-3x/week, preferably on rest days or easy run days. You can see more exercises on our you tube or our Physio ben also recommends some great exercises here on his instagram account @naked.physio
5. Get onto your Running Niggles Early
Don’t be afraid to ask for help! It is best to seek professional advice early to manage your symptoms and prevent the progression of an injury. Our Physiotherapist’s at PhysioFlex will complete a thorough assessment to work out the cause of your symptoms and provide an extensive treatment plan to either keep you running or get you back running ASAP.