Running Injuries: Causes and Treatments


In this section of Best Running Tips I will tell you about the most common running injuries. Learn about them so you know how to prevent them!


When it comes to this topic I rather talk about running injury prevention.

Running Injuries


So many of these smaller or bigger pains and issues be prevented if you and I would follow a few basic rules (and some common sense!):

Injury prevention tip 1 : Mileage
Build up mileage slowly and steadily. Click here for more information.
You might also want to pick up a copy of a training book like Daniels' Running Formula. It's a sensible guide to safe but incredibly effective running programs.

Injury prevention tip 2 : Rest weeks
If you are running 5 times per week or more, make every fourth week a (relative) rest week.
In these weeks cut back your mileage considerably to recover.

Injury prevention tip 3 : Listen to your body.
When running is painful, then stop. Learn to distinguish between muscle soreness and other pains. A bit of muscle soreness is ok; other pains indicate a looming injury, and cutting back on your training is often the wisest thing to do.

Injury prevention tip 4 : Alternate
Alternate hard and easy days.
Give your body a chance to recover!

Running Injuries
Injury prevention tip 5 : Balanced running schedule
Use a balanced running schedule. Have you taken a look at my run/walk beginner running programs or my heart rate monitor running programs?

Injury prevention tip 6 : Shoes
Make sure you are using the right running shoes. As a beginner runner you need to prioritise where you spend your money. Given running is done on your feet, one of the better purchases you can make is a good pair of running shoes. Go to a specialised running shoe store and get fitted!

Injury prevention tip 7 : Stretching and Strengthening
Your legs have to take a lot of pounding. Learn about the bad, ok, good and best practices to stretching and strengthening exercises.

Strength training is important, especially as we get into our 40s and 50s and beyond....!

Also check out the strength training for runners page for a lot more info on strength training. Another useful page is this short article with a list of Foot and Ankle Strengthening Exercises.

Injury prevention tip 8 : Marathon
Don't run a marathon in your first year....

Running Injuries
Sorry, I needed to add the last one explicitly. There are people who run a marathon in their first running year and are completely fine. Usually people who already do other sports. So they do have at least some exercise background.

But I see so many people who start running with the sole purpose of running a marathon. And they want it immediately.... within a year, within four months or even within as much as 12 weeks. I hate to be the one telling you this, but you are very likely heading for disaster. The couch to marathon program does not exist.

When you follow the rules above, you should be able to spend a lot of your life injury free. Also check out my article with some running injury prevention tips.

Now, let's get on with a few common running injuries. The links below lead to articles about these injuries with information on how to treat and to prevent your specific injury.

Running Injuries


Foot Injuries

foot pain
black toenail
running stress fractures
posterior tibial tendonitis

Heel Injuries

heel pain
heel spur
achilles tendinitis

KneeInjuries

running knee pain
iliotibial band syndrome

LegInjuries

running calf cramps
shin splints
hamstring injury
running hip pain

Upper Body Injuries

nipple chafing
side stitch
running back pain
running chest pain

Foot Injuries


Foot Pain
Foot pain is not uncommon for us runners. Just think of the pressure that is applied to your feet every time you take a step. Read up on the most common types of foot pain in this article.


Black toenail
A black toenail, also known as runner's toe is a pretty common injury. It causes some discomfort, but is luckily not as painful as some of the other running injuries described in this section. The link provides a comprehensive guide on what causes black toenail, how to treat it and how to prevent it....


Running Stress Fractures
Stress fractures happen if your feet or ankles are under severe stress for a long period of time.
They are not fun to have and can cause big interruptions in your running. So educate yourself a little about this type of running injury in order to prevent stress fractures!


Posterior Tibial Tendonitis
Posterior tibial tendonitis is a painful condition, affecting the inner side of the foot and ankle. This condition occurs when the posterior tibial tendon becomes inflamed or happens to rupture.


Running Injuries

Heel Injuries


Pain in Heel When Running
Heel pain when running is quite a common issue for runners, both for newcomers and experienced runners. Your heels take a lot of the initial shock when you land on your feet, each and every time. This constant pressure on your heels is sometimes too much, because of which you get heel injuries.


Heel Spur / Plantar Fasciitis
Heel spur / plantar fasciitis is the result of too much wear and tear of the tissue along the bottom of your foot (the plantar fascia). It is a painful and long lasting running injury. Worth to learn more about, so you know what the causes are of plantar fasciitis and how you can prevent it!


Achilles Tendinitis
We all get achilles pains sooner or later. I recommend you read the Achilles tendinitis article to find out about what commonly causes achilles tendinitis and how you can prevent and treat achilles tendinitis.


Knee Injuries


Running Knee Pain
While running knee pain can easily occur.
After all, the knee is heavily used while running. Learn more about the most common runner's knee injuries in this article.


Iliotibial Band Syndrome
Iliotibial Band Syndrome is an overuse injury. The iliotibial band runs from your hip to your shin on the outside of your leg. The rubbing of the iliotibial band on the bones of your knee cause friction and can cause a whole lot of problems...


Leg Injuries


Calf cramps / leg cramps
The most common running injury which every runner will suffer sooner or later are those dreaded calf cramps....


Shin splints
Another dreaded runner's injury is shin splints. Luckily you can take simple measures to reduce your chances of getting shin splints.


Hamstring Injury
A hamstring injury can be pretty painful. They can occur quite suddenly, while you are running or working out comfortably, causing severe pain. Many times a hamstring injury is recurrent.


Hip Pain
Hip pain is not the most common among runners. However when you have hip pain it can limit you severely from doing what you have to do...


Upper Body Injuries


Nipple chafing
Whenever I go on a run longer than 60-75 minutes "unprotected" I end up with bleeding nipples. You too? Then go to the nipple chafing article to find out what you can do about it...


Side Stitch
Find out why you get side stitches during your running and the simple things you can do to prevent it.


Back Pain
Back pain is an issue that many runners face. Check out the article to learn more about running back pain.


Chest Pain
There are various reasons of chest pain for runners. This usually needs to be taken seriously. Check out the running chest pain article to learn more about the type of chest pain you might have.


Alright, that's enough accumulated pain for one page! I hope this page provided you with a good overview of all the things to avoid. In the end, when you are running and training hard, you are always balancing injury risk with additional training load. Many of these problems can be avoided by educating yourself, following running injury prevention strategies and ensuring that when injuries present themselves, you do not try to ignore them, but face into the consequences!
Home > Running Injuries

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What Other Visitors Have Asked

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Click here to write your own.

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Pain on the Inside of my Knee 
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Stomach Cramps (Again!) 
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Thigh Chafing 
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Stomach Cramps 
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Leg Going Numb  
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Lateral Knee Pain 
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Swollen Calf 
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Knee Pain After Running 
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Pain in the Groin Area 
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Possible Stress Fracture? 
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ACL Reconstruction 
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Sprained Ankle Still Swollen After Nearly 2 Months 
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Running Cramps 
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Shin Splints 
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Shin Pains and Leg Cramps 
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Returning from Injury 
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Numbness in Feet When Running 
Once I have run for aproximately 30 minutes I feel numbness in my feet. What could be the cause of this and has anyone suffered this before ? Many thanks …

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