Einstein Orthopedic Surgeon Dr. Minn Saing is the Medical Director for the Blue Cross Broad Street Run. He offers these tips to keep you in top form:
Recognize Risk. Runners are most vulnerable to injury at certain times during their running careers.
- Upon Initial Running – First 4-6 months
- When returning to running after injury
- When running longer distances
- When running faster
Fixable Problems. Most running injuries are caused by recurrent issues that are often identifiable and preventable by the runner making some small changes.
Training Errors. These are the most common source of injury. Here are some common errors that many of us commit:
- Lack of adequate pre-running stretching
- Rapid changes in mileage
- Increase in hill training
- Interval training
- Insufficient rest between training sessions
Running Shoes. Comfort is key. Consideration of wide toe boxes to accommodate your individual anatomy. Replace your shoes after 600 miles of use.
Ideal Running Surface. Should be flat, resilient and relatively soft.
- Avoid Concrete or Rough Roads
- Use Community Running Trails
- Avoid Hills starting out—increased ankle and knee stress
Watch the Weather
- In warm and humid conditions, increase fluid intake.
- Weigh yourself before and after and consume 0.5 liters per lb. lost
- Wear the proper attire in cold weather
- Avoid extreme hot/cold
- Check air pollution levels
- At higher altitudes, allow time for acclimatization
Back. Most back pain is non surgical and will resolve with conservative management. Pain radiating down the leg should be evaluated by a physician.
Hip. Most hip disorders present as groin pain.
Knee. Most overuse knee injuries are patella related
Ankle. Recurrent ankle sprains could be related to ankle laxity
Foot. Problems in runners are related to foot type
Treating Runner Injuries
We treat the majority of running injuries with conservative management. This will include a combination of therapies, including:
- Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation (RICE)
The addition of oral OTC or Rx antiflammatories may also be used. After a period of relative rest, the runner will be introduced back to running in an interval fashion.
If a runner experiences severe pain, swelling, loss of motion, or significant ambulatory dysfunction, the runner should seek consultation with a Sports Medicine Specialist.
Read more Sports Doc for Sports Medicine and Fitness.