Running is not a contact sport that involves sudden sprints, twisting and turning. Therefore, injuries usually don´t occur suddenly. When running, however, you are basically putting the same kind of stress on the body all the time. Most running injuries therefore develop gradually. High intensity training, however, like speed training or hill workouts, could result in a sudden injury if done unwisely or without being in proper shape for it.
1. Training Errors
Most experts agree that training errors is the most common reason for running injuries. The key training error is training too much too soon. Rest is an equally important factor in successful training as the running itself. Over training will not only almost guarantee wear and tear injury, but also stop you from achieving your full potentials as a runner. The body needs time to adjust to a new level of stress and therefore you should always increase the intensity, mileage and variety of training slowly and gradually.
2. Improper Footwear
I started running when I was young, uneducated and eager. I thought the best running shoes must be the most expensive ones. That’s not true, however. If you buy the most expensive shoes and they don’t suit your foot type and accommodate your bio-mechanics of gait, they might do more harm than good. Don’t base your choice of running shoes on fashion or price alone. First make sure the shoe is right for you, then consider other factors.
3. Abnormal Movement Patterns
Normal movement patterns (or bio-mechanics of gait) ensure that the stress which running puts on the body is received in a manner that maximises its efficiency and minimizes the chances of injury. Abnormal movements, on the other hand, can cause increased stress on certain tissues that may result in strain injury.
Acquired Causes – Fixable Without External Remedies
Abnormal movement patterns can often be fixed. This is done with appropriate strengthening exercises, stretches or joint mobilisation. But this is only the case when the movement pattern is a result of muscle weakness or imbalance, stiffness in joints or short muscles.
Mechanical Causes – External Remedies Needed
Sometimes, the problem is mechanical or inherited. An example of this would be one leg that is shorter than the other. Over pronation is another common example. In short, this is when the foot roles too much to the medial (inner) side when touching the ground. In such cases, you have to use external means to fix the problem. Choosing the right kind of shoes and using orthosis are examples of external remedies.
To Wrap It Up
You can prevent most running injuries. The most important thing is to train wisely. Secondly you should take time to find out what kind of shoes suit you. If that doesn’t do the trick, you need to seek professional help to find out if you have any abnormal movement patterns and have it treated appropriately.