Running is on the rise again as the favorite physical activity of most people. More and more individuals are discovering the benefits that running can bring to the body. Starting with the fact that it is the best cardio exercise ever, running is also recognized as a good means of relieving stress by many of those who practice it. In fact, I am one of those who feel that running can bring excellent benefits to the body overall. I use it to relax my mind and remove myself from the stress and the tumult inside my office. Whenever I go out to run and I reach my favorite spot, I feel my soul lifting up and being refreshed. Nothing else can have the same effect for me.
But like anything that brings in any real benefits to our lives, running has its price. Those who practice it are prone to all sorts of injuries that they can suffer, because of the impact and the shock that their movements bring to their legs and their feet. We might not feel it right away, but our body can only withstand so much shock. As with almost any other medical condition, prevention of a running injury is always better than cure, and prevention starts with awareness. As an aid to those who would like to know more about the ailments that runners might suffer, here is a list of the common foot injuries from running:
Plantar Fasciitis- This syndrome causes pain at the heels because of swelling of the ligament that can be found at the foot base. This kind of injury can cause a lot of pain when one is walking and running. If left untreated it can end up causing a heel spur. Usually sufficient rest and some physiotherapy will heal it in time.
Overpronation- Pronation is a term that is applied to the normal movement of the feet according to the gait of the runner. When that motion becomes exaggerated, then it results in overpronation. Usually not a big problem especially if you have the right running shoes for pronation, or in more extreme cases you use orthotics for runners with pronation.
Arch Pain- This is a very common injury and sometimes it is left untreated. Those who suffer from it, feel pain and a burning sensation on the feet arch. Usually caused by a high arch, orthotics can often be very helpful.
Here are the usual ankle injuries that are encountered by runners:
Ankle Sprain- This is fairly common since runners are always in danger of spraining their ankles with all the movement that their feet are doing. This has to be treated right away in order to ensure that the condition will not worsen. Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation is the recommended treatment. RICE in other words.
Achilles Tendonitis- This injury results when the tendon at the back of the ankle is damaged. This has to be treated right away otherwise the tendon is in danger of being ruptured. Usually RICE can help but sometimes you might need a cast to help stabilize the tendon.
There are ways by which these injuries can prevented. The most important step would be to wear the proper footwear. Running shoes should be well padded and cushioned so they can absorb a greater part of the impact from running. They should also prevent slipping by having a good sole for gripping the ground. One has to stretch properly before running to ensure that the body will be in the right condition for the work out and a proper cool down including stretching is recommended too.