Many people fall in love with running. Running is a great way to stay in shape, relieve stress, and control your weight. However, it can also be a bit hard on the body sometimes. Over time, runners sometimes experience occasional hip, knee, or foot pain. Fortunately, this does not mean that you need to stop running. You may need to take a temporary break to give your body a chance to heal from an injury, but you can then return to running after you have had a chance to recover.
In many cases, a running injury serves as a wake-up call that it is time to take better care of your body. Read on to learn more about pain and injuries related to running.
Runners who develop hip pain are often suffering from arthritis, muscle strain, bursitis, nerve irritation, direct impact, or overuse syndromes.
Arthritis is a condition that affects the joints. If a person has arthritis, the cartilage that surrounds the joints breaks down, which allows the bones to rub against each other. This results in pain, stiffness, and difficulty moving the joints.
Inside the joints, there are sacs of fluid called bursae. The bursae provide cushion and lubrication in the areas where tendons and muscle meet bones. When you are moving your body, the bursae help to reduce friction in the joints. The bursae can become inflamed, and this is known as bursitis.
If the hip pain that you are experiencing is located at the front of the hip and the inner thigh, then the pain is likely being caused by a pulled or strained adductor muscle.
Knee pain comes in many varieties. Runners might experience pain directly behind the kneecap or pain on the sides of the kneecap. The knee might make grinding or popping sounds. Swelling of the knee is a common symptom. In many cases, knee pain is worse when a person is bending, kneeling, squatting, walking, or running. Walking downstairs or down a hill can also exacerbate the pain.
If you experience knee pain, it is important to rest the joint. Take a break from your running routine, or at least decrease your distances. Use ice to help reduce inflammation, pain, and swelling. Place an ice pack on the affected area for 20 to 30 minutes at a time, especially after activity.
Compression can also be helpful for knee pain. Try wrapping the knee with an elastic bandage to give it some extra support. Be sure that you stretch sufficiently before running, as this will help to prevent injuries.
In many cases, knee and hip pain can be related to wearing the wrong shoes. This can be true even if your feet don’t hurt. Proper footwear is essential for runners; it provides the body with the support that it needs from the ground up.
If you have knee or hip pain, even without foot pain, you should consider changing your running shoes. Visit a specialized (custom) shoe shop where you can have a gait analysis performed. The professionals there will be able to tell you whether your gait is contributing to the pain that you are experiencing. Often, significant pain relief can be achieved simply by wearing different shoes or using arch supports.
If you experience knee or hip pain as a result of running, visit Foot Solutions. We can perform a gait analysis and provide you with appropriate footwear for your individual needs, such as supportive running shoes, & over the counter, or custom made arch supports.