The Most Common Injuries Of Runners

It won’t surprise you if we say that running causes injury. Also, if you don’t pay attention, many can come.

For these reasons, it is important to work on good running techniques, strengthen the body, not overdo it, etc. 

Now let’s see the most common injuries among runners and how to prevent or treat them.

It won’t surprise you if we say that running causes injury. Also, if you don’t pay attention, many can come.

For these reasons, it is important to work on good running techniques, strengthen the body, not overdo it, etc. 

Now let’s see the most common injuries among runners and how to prevent or treat them.

It is an inflammation of the patella tendon, the tissue that connects the patella to the tibia. 

Because of excessive effort, it is because of continuous stresses that cause discomfort or irritation in the long run.

The injury is created because of the constant effort produced during running (and even more by jumping), which puts the tendon under strain.

While it initially only causes discomfort without being painful, it can get worse over time if proper precautions are not taken.


  • Discomfort or pain in the area inside the kneecap while running

  • Discomfort or pain in the area inside the kneecap while running


  • Stretch the quadriceps, tendons, and calf daily

  • Shorten the pitch opening

  • Do not run with the leg stretched or close to 180º

  • Strengthen the entire lower body area, especially the quadriceps and hamstrings


Symptomatic treatment

    • Avoid running downhill.

    • Temporarily replace the ride with the bicycle or elliptical

    • If the condition is not serious, it will be enough to reduce the weekly kilometers

    • Put ice on the knee to relieve pain and inflammation (after training)

    • Use of infrarrotulian band or Chopat band

    • Muscle strengthening (quadriceps and hamstring) with stress-free exercises

    • Resorting to surgery (only if the tendon is severely damaged)

Tendonitis of the calcaneus

    • While with the tendon of the patella, you can lead a normal life, unless it is in an advanced state, the heel’s tendonitis affects daily life.

    The Achilles tendon connects the two large muscles of the leg to the heel. When it inflames, we face an acute tending.

    It usually occurs because of a high volume of training, if you have little flexibility in the calves, if you are used to running on hard surfaces or jumping is part of daily training.


    • Discomfort or soreness in the heel area and lower leg area while running or immediately after

    • Crunch or snap while moving the knee


    • Strengthen the lower body area, especially calves and tendons

    • Gradually increase your workout

    • Stretch your calves and tendons daily

    • Always warm-up before you run

    • Avoid hard surfaces for running: asphalt or concrete

    • Avoid using heels for women (and men) beach slippers or sandals.


    • Temporarily replace running with a bicycle, elliptical, or any other sport that does not involve running, jumping, or braking hard

    • Put ice on the tendon to relieve pain and inflammation

    • Iron the inflamed area daily.

    • Do strengthening exercises on the sole and calf

    • Correct, optimizing running technique and foot support

    • Resort to surgery (only if the lesion is advanced).

    Injury of the hamstring muscles

    • The muscle hamstrings are in the lower part of the leg, from the thigh to the knee: biceps femoris, semitendinosus, and the semimembranosus.

    A hamstring dilation is usually a single tear, which happens when the numbers stretch excessively and tear. These are usually light injuries, and a short recovery period is enough to rehabilitate.

    With rupture, it is necessary to resort to surgery.


    • Pain in the lower leg, bending or stretching it

    • The appearance of swelling or a hematoma.


    • Always warm-up before starting your workout, especially split workouts (set days)

    • Stretching of the hamstrings, after training and a little before starting

    • Avoid sudden increases in training doses

    • Strengthen the hamstring muscles with various exercises, with elastic bands or in the gym. Otherwise, there will be an exaggerated imbalance between their size and that of the quadriceps.

    • Correct running technique


    • Go to a doctor or a physiotherapist to check the severity of the injury

    • Stop any kind of sporting activity and apply ice to the injured area.

    • Massage sessions by a physiotherapist, keeping the healing process under control.

    • The recovery time depends on the degree of the injury. Be very patient.

    • After a first rest period, practice eccentric muscle strengthening exercises. 

Plantar fasciitis

  • In the sole, there is a fibrous area of tissue called the plantar fascia. It is a tendon that connects the calcaneus (the heel bone) to the foot’s front.

    If this tendon becomes inflamed, we notice that our foot will hurt when walking. We’re going to have plantar fasciitis.

    Pain occurs in the heel area and affects those who run or play sports, including jumps, and overweight people, pregnant women, or people who work on their feet for most of the day.

    An unsuitable pair of shoes is usually a major cause of fasciitis. It also occurs if you spike the volume of your workout.

    Runners with hollow or flat feet are more likely to suffer from it, as are those who are overweight.



    • Running shoes adapted to the foot

    • If being overweight is important, walk instead of running. Once the weight is reduced, you can start running.

    • Stretching of the feet and calves after training.

    • Strengthening and stimulation of the plantar fascia with specific exercises


    • Absolute rest for a period, to avoid deterioration

    • Place ice on the sole to relieve pain and inflammation

    • Strengthen the plantar fascia and calves with specific exercises

    • Seek surgery (if the injury is severe)


Tibial periostitis

The famous ” shin splints ” as they say in English or tibial periostitis are among the most common injuries of runners.

It comprises the inflammation of the tibia’s periosteum, the outer membrane that surrounds the bones. It usually appears when exploding the volume of training, changing shoes, and training surface to a harder one than usual.


  • Pain in the inner side of the tibia, between the knee and ankle

  • Inflamed “balls” along the tibia


  • Avoid running on hard surfaces such as asphalt or concrete

  • accumulate the volume of the workout

  • Stretch the twins and tendons after each training session

  • Analyze the support of the foot with a podiatrist’s support to choose a suitable pair of shoes.

  • Strengthening of the superior tibialis muscle.


    • Place ice on the injured area after each training session.

    • If the pain continues, stop running.

    • Contact a physical therapist to check the degree of the injury

    • General strengthening of the lower body


Ilio-tibial band syndrome (runner’s knee)

It is another of the most common injuries among runners, especially those of long distances.

An intense pain on the knee’s outer lateral side characterizes it, although it can transmit pain in the thigh and hip.

The injury begins gradually, initially limiting the running time.

The pain occurs once the 10 to 15 minutes have elapsed before you run and then worsens by forcing you to stop before the training session is over.

The pain is greater when training downhill or slower since the rubbing contact between the iliotibial band tendon and the external femoral epicondyle is greater.


  • Pain on the outside of the knee

  • The appearance of pain after 10 or 15 minutes from the start of training


  • accumulate the volume of the workout

  • Avoid any kind of descent

  • General strengthening of the lower body, especially the hip adductor muscles (gluteus medius and tensor fascia lata)

  • If you train on an athletics track, change the direction of travel

  • Decrease leg opening and improve running style.


    • Stop running. You cannot do a bicycle, elliptical or swimming.

    • Correct foot support and consider using an insole to correct probation or existing asymmetry

    • General strengthening of the lower body

    • Take anti-inflammatories under medical advice.

    • Cryotherapy sessions.

    • The treatment continues until the discomfort has completely disappeared.

    • Return to running gradually, with training initially interspersed and progressively at wider intervals


Metatarsal Stress Fracture

One of the worst injuries a runner can suffer is precisely this because it will put us out of action for a good time.

The metatarsal stress fracture occurs because of the foot’s continuous impact on the ground or excessive continuous rubbing.


  • Pain in the foot’s front as soon as you run Pain or to swell in the foot’s top.


  • Avoid abrupt increases in training doses

  • Well-cushioned shoes, if you have not yet mastered a proper running technique.

  • Warm-up before you exercise.


    • Stop practicing sports. The bone having micro-fractures, if we keep running, will eventually fracture completely.

    • Absolute rest for 6 or 7 weeks. Try to walk as little as possible.

    • Contact a doctor to find out the state of the fracture

    • Seek surgery (if the fracture is irreversible)


Chondromalacia of the patella

The posterior patella cartilage, which is several millimeters thick, facilitates better patella movement within the femur.

The chondropathy (etymologically “cartilage disease”) or chondromalacia ( “weakening of the cartilage”) of the patella is produced by trauma, instability, or dislocation of the patella, muscular debility, or alterations of the position of the patella relative to the femur.


Pain in the patella tendon, similar to tendonitis.


Progressive increase in training volume
Suitable running shoes
Optimize your running technique and foot support


  • Rehabilitation of the strength and balance of the different muscle groups that interact on the knee

  • Training program prescribed by a physiotherapist

  • If the pain continues, infiltrate.

  • You are resorting to surgery for advanced cartilage injuries.

  • As you can see, the prevention of this type of injury has a common denominator: training wisely, without exaggeration or effort.

The body is wise and needs a change period for everything, even to absorb the training volume.

We must progress little by little, warm up and stretch conscientiously, strengthen the muscles as we increase training, and choose the right shoes for our body characteristics.

Do you have any of these injuries? Some other? How are you treating her?

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