Most people are aware of the fact that wearing the right running shoes for the terrain they are likely to run on; listening to their bodies, warming up before a run and gradually building up their speed and distance are all helpful in preventing injuries when going for a run.
Many runners do, however, make mistakes before, during and after their run that still lead to personal injuries. Here are a few tips on avoiding those mistakes when going for a run, and achieving a pain-free, strong finish on the trail, track or road.
While it is without doubt essential to stretch your muscles before a run, butterfly holds, deep lunges and hamstring pulls (hand-to-toe) are best left for release after the run, as they can, in fact, make muscles sluggish and subsequently make getting going more difficult. Warming up with a gentle walk (three to five minutes) followed by a run-walk for approximately five minutes is far more likely to ensure you survive your run without accidental injuries.
Too much too soon
If you are new to running, pushing yourself too hard (long distances, high speeds, and strenuous workouts) to begin with can easily lead to sprains; stress fractures, shin splints and similar sporting injuries. Take it easy to begin with; alternate hard workouts with lighter gym sessions and gradually increase first your distance, then your speed. Pace yourself, bearing wind and weather conditions in mind, keeping up a pace against strong winds is much harder than running with the wind, so make allowances for this by reducing your pace.
A great deal of runners suffer neck, back or hip pain because they adopt an unnatural, ‘leaning’ posture during running. Prevent such personal injuries by:
- Looking ahead
- Keeping the upper body upright and relaxed
- Maintaining short stride lengths
- Landing mid-foot
- Working towards quicker cadence
Adopting this type of posture will help to settle your body into that natural rhythm required to prevent running-related injuries.
Avoid slips, trips and falls by scanning the ground for potential slip, trip or fall hazards at all times. Such hazards could, for instance, consist of wet or greasy areas on the road; loose debris, potholes or other uneven surfaces, and so on.
Sometimes injuries by slipping, tripping or falling cannot be avoided. If you suffer a slip, fall or trip injury through no fault of your own, speak to an Accident Advice Helpline advisor on Freephone number, 0800 689 0500, about claiming for slip or trip injury compensation.
Date Published: July 22, 2015
Author: Accident Advice