Pins and Needles While Running

pins and needles while running

I'm a regular runner and I usually jog for about 4-5 miles. Lately, I have been feeling pins and needles in my lower legs and feet during my runs.

It isn't painful, but it's very uncomfortable.

I've also noticed that my calves are always very tight. Can you please help me with this?

Answer by Dominique:

Hi there,
Thanks for your question about pins and needles while running.

Let's work out a few different reasons and approaches to deal with this:

1. Check out your running shoes
2. Blood flow is the name of the game
3. Prevention - Stretching and Warming Up
4. If all else fails... call in the experts

Check Out Your Running Shoes

pins and needles while running
Likely culprits to this are your running shoes. Maybe the shoes themselves are too tight? Maybe you are lacing up way tighter than you need to?

As you are running, your feet expand a little bit. Too tight shoes, or lacing up too tightly may lead to issues into the run.

I had this once playing soccer as a kid when I was about fifteen / sixteen. I had a pair of new soccer shoes and they were just that little bit too tight. Caused me to have pins and needles for an entire game! After that I guess they loosened up a little. Maybe I just had my laces up too tightly in that particular game. Never happened again.

Blood Flow is the Name of the Game

Your tight calves are suspects in this case as well. They might be negatively affecting your blood circulation. With slower blood flow, your feet and toes might throw a small rebellion, causing the pins and needles sensation.

So, how do you deal with a rebellion? By winning hearts and minds… or in this case, muscles! Warm them up first with about ten minutes of easy running, then stretch them nice and slow.

Prevention: Stretching and Warming Up

pins and needles while running
So, let's get onto stretching. You are used to running 4-5 miles. For beginners, I'd advise starting with an easy walk. But you, I reckon we can do an easy ten minutes of running.

Then, do some dynamic stretches. Get your legs warmed up and get those joints lubricated. I have got some suggestions on my page about Running Stretches.

If All Else Fails... Call in the Experts

pins and needles while running
If none of the above works, it might be time to get some qualified help in. A good start would be a remedial massage to get into those calves and loosen them up a little bit.

Additionally, if it is a foot / shoe thing, going to a specialised running store may help. As a last resort, a podiatrist can offer professional assistance when you need it.

Keep in mind that there is an expert on anything and rather than putting up with the pins and needles for much longer, take some steps to try and fix it up. I am sure that in no time you'll be running smoothly again, without the annoying pins and needles!

I hope this helps you.
Best of luck.
Kind regards,

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