Tips for Protecting Your Joints While Running
Running is excellent exercise for your cardiovascular health, but it can put a significant amount of strain on your joints. If you’re a runner who is dealing with painful joints, it can help to consult a physiatrist or physical therapist to learn how you can strengthen your joints and help them heal. You can also reduce the risk that you will develop joint pain by following this advice while running.
Maintain a Healthy Weight
One of the most important things you can do for your joint health is to maintain a healthy weight. This is especially true for runners. When you carry excess weight, it can overburden your joints and increase the risk of wear and tear injuries. When you carry excess weight and you’re running, the additional pressure caused by your weight is compounded by the force of your feet pounding the ground. If you are experiencing joint pain while running and you think your weight may be to blame, you may need to adjust your training regime while you focus on weight loss.
Be Picky About Where You Run
Ideally, you should do most of your running on dirt trails or other off-road surfaces. Running on concrete and asphalt can harm your joints since those surfaces don’t absorb any of the force of your steps. If you run on a track, reverse directions during your warmup and cool down. This will prevent joint wear from only making turns in one direction.
Doing any single activity exclusively will cause overuse injuries in the joints that you work out the most during those activities. Cross-training will give your running joints a break while strengthening all of your muscles for additional joint protection.
If joint pain is interfering with your activities, make an appointment with a physiatrist or physical therapist in New York, NY, at Manhattan Total Health. Schedule an appointment with one of our providers by calling (917) 720-2689.