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Dr. Frank Henry- Running Risks and Benefits

Running Offers Both Benefits and Risks

Aug 02, 2023

Running is a great exercise for our body, as it improves our cardiovascular health, increases our metabolism and can build up our muscles. However, running also poses a risk of injury, especially if you engage in running as a strenuous exercise. Protect your feet before running by stretching before and after, as this improves your circulation, relieves stiffness, and prevents strains. Proper running shoes also play a large part in ensuring the comfort, flexibility, and support for your feet. The type of surface you’re running on can also either increase or decrease your risk of injury. Hard, uneven surfaces can lead to more shock absorption as we run, increasing the risk of stress fractures, slips, and falls. Softer ground, such as grass, are safer for the feet. Avoid running while it is raining, as wetter ground can lead to a greater chance of slipping. Listen to your feet if you feel any pain and see your podiatrist.

How to Prevent Running Injuries

Many common running injuries are caused by overuse and overtraining. When the back of the kneecap starts wearing out and starts causing pain in your knee, this is commonly referred to as runner’s knee. Runner’s knee is a decrease in strength in your quadriceps and can occur if you’re not wearing properly fitted or supporting shoes. To prevent runner’s knee, focusing on hip strengthening is a good idea, as well as strengthening your quads to keep the kneecaps aligned.

What Are Some Causes of Running Injuries?
- One cause of a common running injury is called iliotibial band syndrome.
- Plantar fasciitis is also another common injury.
- Stress fractures can occur from overtraining, lack of calcium, or even your running style.

Best Ways to Prevent Running Injuries
- Wear footwear that fits properly and suits your running needs.
- Running shoes are the only protective gear that runners have to safeguard them from injury.
- Make a training schedule. Adding strengthening exercises as well as regular stretching can help keep you strong and limber and can lessen the possibility of injuries.
- Stretching keeps muscles limber, this will help you gain better flexibility.

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