Running Injuries &
Chiropractic Treatment


Runners usually sustain two types of injuries: Acute trauma and injuries from overuse.

The acute injury is a sudden one, things like a torn ligament or broken bones are classified as such . The most frequently problems encountered by chiropractors though, are injuries from overuse. The followings are an overview of the most common injuries a chiropractor will see with runners.

Plantar Fasciitis

Stretching or tearing the connective tissue on the bottom of the foot where the tissue attaches to the heel is what causes this condition.

Pain is in a specific area on the bottom of the foot towards the heel, possibly radiating towards the ball of the foot. The foot feels tender early in the morning and becomes less painful with movement. It is often associated with a walk where the foot rolls inward (pronation)and a fallen arch.

Regular and frequent stretching of the calf and Achilles tendon is one way to prevent this from occuring. It is also important that the feet are assessed for any biomechanical problems. Orthotics or insoles may also be prescribed.

Bursitis or Tendonitis

Bursitis is an irritation of the bursa (fluid filled sac which sits under the tendon) or tendons from friction, trauma, pressure or dysfunction. Tendinitis happens when a tendon gets inflamed. Damage to the menisci is a really common sports injury, especially in activities where a side to side movement or a sudden change in speed can cause them to tear.

Achilles Tendonitis

Achilles tendinitis means you feel pain in the large tendon that extends from in the back of your heel to your calf muscle. It hurts most when you get up in the morning and when you start to walk or run.
To prevent a chronic problem, do not run through pain. If your Achilles tendon is sore, get it treated immediately. Again, it is also important that the feet are assessed for any biomechanical problems. Orthotics or insoles may also be prescribed and the use of soft heel-lifts are effective as part of chiropractic treatment.

Shin Splints

Pain is experienced in the inner part of the lower leg.  The pain, ranging from mild discomfort to sharp pain with every step, is referred to as shin splints. A lesser known ailment, shin splints is very persistent. Sufferers can expect the pain to last three to ten days after initial onset. Shin splints is actually a condition called Medial Tibial Stress Syndrome (MTSS).

Good shoes with shock absorbing features, heel toe landing for the minimum impact, and calf stretches will help with prevention. Sports taping will also help.

Stress Fracture

These small fractures occur due to excessive stress (overuse of the bone) or an increase in intensity or distance running, resulting in gradual breakdown of the bone.

The pain occurs in the foot and lower leg becoming more intense with weight bearing activity. X-rays appear negative initially but fractures become visible up to two weeks after the initial injury.

Ankle Sprain

Running on level ground rarely results in an ankle sprain but cross country running, trail running and stepping in a pot hole all could potentially lead to an ankle sprain.

This is one condition which requires immediate attention along with rest Ice Compression (gentle) and elevation.  Note: Ice should be applied for about 15 minutes at a time, with at least 15 minute intervals between application.

Knee Injuries

The knee is the largest joint in the body, made up of bones, cartilage, muscles, tendons and ligaments.  There are a number of common knee injuries. First, there is a knee sprain which means you have stretched or torn a ligament. Then there are strains, which mean you have torn a muscle or tendon.
Knee injuries are actually caused by a lack of strength and flexibility rather than anything than can accurately be described as overuse. In fact, it can be brought on in runners even if they are only running around 5 miles, which can hardly be seen as overuse.

Iliotibial Band Syndrome

This is pain or aching in the outer side of the knee and usually happens in the middle or at the end of a run and is often seen in runners who train only on a track or on uneven ground.

How To Avoid Injuries

The majority of running injuries occur from overtraining.  Avoid doing too much too soon. An unrelenting increase in mileage from one week to the next will ultimately result in a breakdown. Most important your progress in mileage and speed should be gradual!  Mileage should only be increased by approximately 10% per week. Every third week drop back a  small amount.   Intersperse intense days and easy days each week, devote one or two days each week to rest or non-running activities to allow the body to recover along with regular stretching may help reduce injuries.  Having a chiropractor assess your running technique and running posture is a great way to avoid  any running injuries altogether.
Pain is a warning; stop running and consult a chiropractor immediately.

Chiropratic Care for Running Injuries

Chiropractors use gentle, specific manipulation and adjustment techniques to free stiff joints, restore normal movement and remove spinal irritation. Chiropractors may also use modalities such as ultrasound and interferential treatment.

Treatment is generally painless, although some short-term discomfort may sometimes be felt around the injured area.

Once painful symptoms settle, the chiropractor will encourage you to follow a program of rehabilitation exercises to help strengthen the injured area, improve flexibility and prevent recurrence of the problem.
Chiropractic treatment aims to restore normal function to your joints and muscles as well as your nervous system, which will increase control, co-ordination and muscle strength.

If you have extended health benefits, you either use them or lose them every year. Why not use them? You do not need to be referred by your doctor to see a chiropractor for low back pain or other conditions. You will receive an individually tailored chiropractic treatment program. Friendly, professional care in Hamilton Ancaster Ontario. We are here to help you, your family or your friends effectively manage or eliminate your back pain….. contact us to schedule your FREE 15 minute chiropractic consultation. Call now.

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