Chesapeake Physical and Aquatic Therapy
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Training Injuries and Physical Therapy

Participants in running competitions have nearly doubled since 2007 with races gaining increased popularity. Today there are a variety of races to choose from: 5K, 10K, half marathons, marathons, sprint triathlons, triathlons, duathlons, and obstacle course races. Growing participation in these races has led to a higher number of people suffering an injury while preparing for a race.

Training injuries can vary in body-location and severity for each person. Common running injuries have included: patellofemoral pain, muscle strains (specifically hamstring, quadriceps, calf, hip flexors, and groin muscles), iliotibial band (ITB) syndrome, shin splints, Achilles tendonitis, plantar fasciitis, meniscal injuries, ankle sprains, and stress fractures.

How likely is an injury to occur while training for a race? Research studies have found the incidence to be shockingly high. Studies have found 50% of triathletes and 79% of long distance runners were injured while training. Also, studies have looked into common factors contributing to these training injuries. These top factors being: limited flexibility, lack of strength in specific muscles, poor running surface/terrain, poor choice in footwear, and poor mechanics/form when running.

How can a runner beat these odds and make it to race day healthy? With the help of physical therapy. Your physical therapist can help you identify the cause of your pain and help you return to your usual training or workout routine quicker than trying to manage the injury on your own. Using a variety of manual techniques, exercises, and modalities, your physical therapist will develop an individualized plan for you.This individualized plan will address the factors that contributed to your injury to help you return to your training as quickly and safely as possible. Also, your physical therapist can assess your running technique, review your training schedule, and give you advice on how to best avoid any injuries in the future.

If you have any further questions, please follow up with your local physical therapist or click here to contact us.

1. Statistics (2013). Retrieved October 30th, 2013, from
2. Burns J, Keenan AM, Redmond AC. Factors associated with triathlon-related overuse Injuries. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther 2003 Apr;33(4):177-184.
3. VanGent RN, Siem D, Middelkoop M, et al. Incidence and determinants of lower extremity running injuries in long distance runners: a systematic review. Br J Sports Med 2007;41:469-480.

By Jared Goldstein
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