Can running hurt my structure?
Running is #1 exercise of choice for people seeking to increase their fitness. Programs like Couch to 5k have spurned millions of Americans to strap on some running shoes and hit the streets toward better health.
However, running is the most common source of sports related injury in the country. Injuries to the foot/ankle, knee, hip, and low back can often side line a runner for weeks, while knocking the wheels off their fitness goals. I see this far too often when taking care of runners with chronic injuries.
Many times, the problem isn’t the sport itself, but the way the sport is performed. Improper running form from poor running posture or repetitive heel striking are the most common culprits. Over the course of dozens of miles, heel striking can jar all of the joints of the lower extremity causing the spine to shift out of place. Of course, once the spine shifts out of place, then secondary conditions will inevitably result.
So how can you make running safe?
- Change your form. Go to your local running store like “The Runner’s Depot” which usually give great classes on Natural Running, POSE, or Chi Running.
- Evaluate your footwear. If you’re wearing the wrong shoes, then you will continue to get injured. Most local running stores have experts ready to fit you for the right shoe for your specific foot.
- Get checked for any underlying structural shifts that may be causing weak running posture and reduce your body’s ability to heal and repair.
Don’t let injury knock you off track from your weight loss and fitness goals. Run long, and run safe.
ALSO. There’s a FREE intro to Chi Running at the Runner’s Depot Store in Davie on Saturday February 9th.