Paspa Physical Therapy

Avoid Running Injuries This Summer

If running has been a major part of your life, you dread the day you might experience an injury. You want to do everything in your power to prevent an injury. Perhaps you may find comfort in knowing that most running injuries can be prevented.

Below you will find some helpful tips for injury prevention during this summer’s running season. We believe that injury prevention is always the most effective way for the longevity of a runner. Our experts can help manage your training to help you reduce your risk.

If, for some reason, you do experience a running injury or need pre-season conditioning, our experts at Paspa Physical Therapy, located in Manhattan, NY, are highly trained and ready to help. We have many years of experience and are dedicated to helping those who love running continue in their strides for many more years to come!

If you have questions about reducing your injury risk or suspect that you have an injury, schedule a physical therapy appointment with us today!

A female runner in NYC trying to prevent a running injury this summer.

Common Running Injuries

As a runner, you may be susceptible to several different kinds of injuries. Below you will find the most common injuries:

  • Runner’s Knee- This common overuse injury is also referred to as Patellofemoral syndrome. The knee pain you experience from runner’s knee will be in the front or side of your knee at the patella tendon. You may especially feel pain when sitting with your knee bent for an extended period of time, walking up or down stairs, or when you are squatting.
  • Stress Fracture- Stress fractures occur when a hairline crack forms in your bone. It is commonly seen in the lower leg, heels, and upper foot bones for runners.
  • Shin Splints- Shin splints can be identified by pain along your shin bone. The connective tissue that attaches the muscles to your bone becomes inflamed and painful from overuse. 
  • Achilles Tendonitis You may feel pain, stiffness, or a burning sensation around your Achilles tendon. This tendon attaches the calf muscle to the heel bone.
  • Pulled Muscles- Small tears in your muscles.
  • Hamstring Injuries- These are tears or strains of the muscles and tendons in the back of your thigh.
  • Ankle sprain Occurs when the ligaments in your ankle are stretched beyond their limits and tear, often caused by rolling your ankle.
  • Plantar Fasciitis- When your plantar fascia (the thick tissue on the bottom of your foot that connects the heel bone to the toes) becomes inflamed.
  • IT Band Syndrome- The IT Band is a thick fibrous tissue that runs along the outside of your thigh. It can become swollen from excessive rubbing against your hip or knee bones. This often occurs in distance runners and those individuals new to the sport.

How Can I Prevent Overuse Injuries?

Below you will find practical steps that you can take to help you prevent common running injuries. This may even include learning how to breathe properly while running. 

Always Warm-Up

Stretching during your warm-up helps keep your muscles flexible. Even a 5-minute warm-up can make all the difference.

Examine Your Running Technique and Make Any Necessary Changes to Your Running Form

Even the slightest imbalance from having an improper running form can cause major issues. By adjusting your running technique and implementing new movement patterns with a running gait analysis, you can have proper form and prevent injuries.

Participate in Strength Training

Most runners overlook the importance of strength training. If you only focus on running, your chances of experiencing an overuse injury are high.

If you cross-train, you will be able to strengthen the muscles that support your body as you run. Avoid overtraining. Doing so helps to prevent injuries.

Listen to Your Body

Allow yourself time to rest and your sore muscles time to recover. When your body tells you to stop, it’s always best to listen to it. If the hot summer’s day is getting to you, take a break and find a shaded place to cool down.

Run with Proper Footwear

Wearing shoes that do not fit properly can result in shin pain as well as other injuries. Running shoes are designed to fit your biometrics so that they fit properly and provide adequate support for your specific foot shape.

Having high-quality running shoes can also reduce your risk. If you purchase new shoes, transition gradually into wearing them.

Nourish Your Body with Nutritious Food, Stay Hydrated, and Get Sufficient Sleep

Opt for eating three meals a day, as well as snacks with high-quality protein in every meal. These nutrients will help your body recover before your next training session.

Staying hydrated is also essential, especially during the summer season. This will help you prevent dehydration. Drinking plenty of water can play a major part in injury prevention. You can also drink electrolytes to replace the minerals that you have lost while sweating.   

When you get sufficient sleep, you allow your body time to recover so that you are ready for your next running session, which helps prevent overuse injuries.

Gradually Increase Your Activity Level

Increasing your activity level too quickly can make you overly susceptible to injury. As a general rule, if you are going to increase your weekly mileage, do so by no more than 10% per week.

Incorporate Mobility Training

This will increase your range of motion, making you a more efficient runner and preventing running injuries.

Runners stretching and warming-up to prevent injuries this summer.

Avoid a Running Injury This Summer

Injuring yourself can be devastating. However, as a runner, there are preventative measures that you can take to help keep you in the race all summer long.

If you are experiencing even just the beginning twinges of discomfort, it is important not to ignore the pain. Our physical therapists specialize in running injuries and can provide you with personalized, one-on-one care.

Our facility is equipped with a full gym and private treatment rooms for your privacy. Your comfort and success during your sessions are our top priority!

For more information about running injury prevention, creating a running plan, or an examination of a possible injury, contact our experts at Paspa Physical Therapy. We are conveniently located in Manhattan, NY.

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