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Common Running Injuries

Common Running Injuries
March 31st, 2021 / Ankle pain

Common Running Injuries

It is extremely common for new and experienced runners alike to push themselves too hard and create an injury. These are often overuse injuries, and they are an ever-present danger to runners of all levels. Impact force is the force that is absorbed by the leg and foot when striking the ground. An impact force of around 3 – 4 times your body weight occurs in your legs when running, and can increase to 10 times your bodyweight during ballistic training exercises. High impact forces combined with overuse, fatigue and potential biomechanical / technique deficiencies can create a number of physiological issues.

Most running injuries occur in the knee, followed by foot and ankle, lower leg, then hip and pelvis. As podiatrists we are trained to understand all of these crucial areas, and with our state-of-the-art Zebris running analysis system at Runners Tech Perth, we are well equipped to assess and manage your running concerns.

Some of the more common running injuries include:

  • Knee pain
  • Shin splints (medial tibial stress syndrome)
  • Plantar fasciopathy
  • Achilles tendinopathy
  • Stress fractures
  • Iiotibial band (ITB) pain
  • Hamstring injury

Biomechanical / technique issues that can lead to injury include:

  • Overstriding
  • Poor cadence
  • Excessive heel striking and excessive ankle dorsiflexion
  • Issues with pelvic position and flexibility
  • Muscle imbalances

Training errors that can precipitate injury include:

  • Training frequency
  • Duration, intensity, distance and speed of sessions
  • Lack of variety in a training program and failure to address all key areas
  • Footwear

The biomechanical and technique deficiencies can be quite small, but the repetitive nature of training can push these deficiencies to the point of injury. Our Zebris analysis allows us to break-down your biomechanical setup frame-by-frame, assess alignment deficiencies and compare these with pressure mapping through your feet and centre of gravity tracking.

UK running injury specialist and gait analyst Matt Phillips has broken down biomechanical improvement in to four stages:

  • Unconscious incompetence
  • Conscious incompetence
  • Conscious competence
  • Unconscious competence

These four stages basically identify and work through the biomechanical deficiencies you display without realising, up until the point where you consciously address these areas until they are resolved, and you unconsciously perform your running gait with better biomechanical form. We utilise these principles in clinic, and work with you closely to identify and address any biomechanical problems that are or may lead to injury.

Running has a myriad of health benefits, which is why we are motivated to keep everybody as active as possible. Our running analysis, biomechanical advice, rehabilitation programs and interventions allow runners of all levels to keep putting one foot in front of the other.

The first piece of advice from the Sports Medicine Australia website is to consult a professional to identify areas of risk before injury becomes a factor, so call us to book an appointment.

All advice is dependent on the individual, so it is always best to have your gait assessed professionally to make sure you get the advice best suited for you.

Follow our socials closely as we will continue to detail specific injuries and management approaches over the coming weeks and months.

References:
Running Fact Sheet (2008). Sports Medicine Australia. Available at
https://sma.org.au/resources-advice/running/

Brandon Laan (2013). The Five Most Common Running Form Mistakes. Available at
https://www.podiumrunner.com/training/the-five-most-common-running-form-mistakes/

Matt Phillips (2020). Introduction to Running Biomechanics. Available at
https://runnersconnect.net/running-biomechanics/

Cassie Dionne (n.d.). Impact forces, shoes, and lower leg injuries: Part 1. Available at
https://breakingmuscle.com/fitness/impact-forces-shoes-and-lower-leg-injuries-part-1

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