Why are there running injuries?

Running may seem like a simple activity to take up to increase fitness. However, it’s not necessarily quite as straightforward as it may appear with some research showing that up to three-quarters of runners experience an injury each year. Depending on how bad that injury is and just how it is maintained, many runners just give up and do not continue to run. The reasons for running overuse injury are multifactorial but are linked to issues such as carrying out too much running too soon before allowing your body to adapt to the increased levels of exercise. Inadequate running footwear with design features which do not match up those of the runners requirements may also be a factor. Issues with foot biomechanics as well as the running technique can also be problems at raising the risk for an overuse injury.

An example of a running injury is anterior compartment syndrome. There is fibrous fascia surrounding muscles which contain the muscles in place. In the event that fascia is tight, once we exercise the muscle would want to expand however that tight fascia inhibits it. That pressure within the fascia compartment may be painful. In anterior compartment syndrome, this affects the muscles in the front of the lower leg. The most common reason for this problem is what is known as overstriding. In this the runner is striking the ground with their front leg too far in ahead of the body. To lower the foot to the ground, the anterior leg muscles need to work harder. As they work harder, the muscles expand and if the fascia isn’t going to allow it, then this results in being painful. It will only be painful when running and will not be painful when not running. The easiest method to deal with this problem to use approaches for the runner to shorten their stride length in order that the front foot isn’t going to make contact with the ground too far ahead of the body when running.

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