What are Running Injuries

Running has become one of the most popular ways to improve and maintain fitness, and to stay in shape. In fact, more than 40 million North Americans run on a regular basis.

Although running is a great way to stay active, many runners have to deal with an injury at some point.

More than 80% of running injuries are caused by repetitive stress, but sudden injuries like a sprained ankle or a torn muscle can happen, too.

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Dr. Linda Randazzo

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Dr James McBean, BSc, DC, Chiropractor, discusses runner’s pain.

Ankle Sprains and Common Treatment Recommendations

One of the commonest injuries we see in sports medicine is the simple ankle sprain, but it’s actually a lot more complicated than people think.

There are a number of different ligaments in the ankle. Some of them are on the outside half of the ankle, so this is the lateral or outside part where the fibula this is the bone here, attaches to the talus, that’s the bone that forms the top part of the foot that goes up and down.

There are also ligaments on the other side of the ankle attaching the tibia, again, down towards the talus. The most common injury would be one in which the foot turns outwards, so when people roll their ankle, and that would damage the ligaments out here.

We generally grade those injuries from one to three. So one would be the mildest injury, so more of a simple sprain, and then three would be considered a complete tear of the ligaments. And those are the kinds of cases where we might actually have to consider things like casting or surgery.

Most minor ankle sprains, so grade 1 or even grade 2 sprains, you might consider doing a couple of different things in terms of treatment. To begin with, we would want to put on ice. We might want to take an anti-inflammatory.

You would certainly want to consider seeking professional help from a physiotherapist or even seeing your family doctor in cases where people are unable to bear weight after an injury like this.

So if they’re unable to put any weight on the foot whatsoever, that’s the sort of injury where you should be going to the emergency room, and possibly having an x-ray. Most of these injuries when treated with therapy, maybe wearing a brace for a short period of time, and slowly and gradually resuming your activity, will generally not result in any kind of long-term problems.

Most grade 1 type injuries are typically going to resolve within about four to six weeks. So at that point you can consider going back to your usual sports. Grade 2 injuries can take a little longer, somewhere maybe between six and ten weeks, and then grade 3 injuries can sometimes take as long as 12 weeks.

And of course if surgery or casting is necessary it could take a little longer to resume your sports. Ankle injuries are very common in lots of different sports, but particularly sports where you have to cut and turn and particularly in turf sports. So sports like basketball, soccer, ultimate Frisbee, we see these kinds of injuries all the time in these various sports.

If you think you have an ankle injury or have more questions about ankle injuries, you could consult your family physician who might refer you to a sports medicine doctor.

Video shot in conjunction with http://www.aesmphysiotherapytoronto.ca/

Presenter: Dr. Grant Lum, Sports Medicine Physician, Toronto, ON

Local Practitioners: Sports Medicine Physician

Ashley Charlebois, RD, discusses A great Diet for Runners

Larissa Roux, MD FRCP Dip Sport Med, MPH, PhD, discusses chafing symptoms and treatments.

Runner's Knee Pain Symptoms & Treatments

It’s very common for runners to develop pain which often comes and goes if they’re running, and it becomes more and more persistent as you continue to pursue your running.

Very often, pain by the knee; pain in the lower legs; could be pain in your backside for want of a better term – these are very typical kinds of things which aren’t relieved by just stretching and strengthening. They need to be assessed.

Some of the most common running injuries are shin splints, anterior compartment syndrome, [inaudible] bend syndrome, patellofemoral syndrome, a lot of low back pain and stress fractures – these are the most common injuries that people complain about.

Most runners are familiar with these terms. Well, runners are a curious breed of creature in that they feel that they can continue what they’re doing despite the pain. They’ll run through the pain. This is a very bad idea, and eventually, you will prove to yourself that it’s a very bad idea.

Typically, the basic treatment at home can be rest, ice, compression for any type of swelling, elevation – that sort of an at-home therapy. But really you want to find out what’s causing this problem.

A very common cause is a problem within the sacroiliac joints of the pelvis – they’re not articulating properly, they’re not moving through their full range of motion. The chiropractor can use chiropractic manipulation techniques, adjusting those, freeing up the joints, getting them moving. That’s just one example.

We’re also interested in what’s happened with your feet – whether or not your arches have come down, you’ve over-pronated your feet. And if necessary, we can recommend orthotic devices for your running shoes.

We can look at your running form and decide – perhaps you’ve become a heel-runner as you get older, and you’re causing a great deal of distress to your body, running a very inefficient way. So chiropractors who are particularly interested in running may be able to give you very good advice on how you can change your running form to run a lot lighter on your feet, more effortlessly, and essentially glide along, causing less trauma to your body.

A very important thing to understand is that where you feel the pain is not necessarily the root cause of your problem. It’s a complex problem, it’s a riddle, and a very good person to solve that riddle, to sort it all out, is a chiropractor.

Presenter: Dr. James McBean, Chiropractor, Vancouver, BC

Local Practitioners: Chiropractor

Dr Larissa Roux, MD FRCP Dip Sport Med, MPH, PhD, discusses How to Treat Foot and Toe Blisters

Larissa Roux, MD FRCP Dip Sport Med, MPH, PhD, discusses hamstring pulls in sports.

Chafing in Running and Cycling

Chafing is simply irritated, rubbed skin.

It’s the result of a mixture of heat and sweat and either body parts rubbing together, or friction from clothing, which can result in discomfort, itchiness and pain.

Really the best treatment for chafing is prevention. Ways to prevent chafing include staying well hydrated to ensure free-flowing perspiration, making sure that your clothes are clean and well fitted, not too snug but still nice and close to the skin, made of breathable fabrics without too many seams. Sometimes dusting your clothes with powder, or your skin before you put on your outerwear can be helpful.

Treatment options for chafing really include keeping the area disinfected, that means just clean with soap and water, applying an antibiotic ointment over top of the irritated area. Some people even like diaper rash ointment, it seems to work really well.

And then, making sure that there is an adhesive bandage or Band-Aid placed right on top of that to allow for optimal healing.

If you feel that you have a chafed area of skin that is not sort of resolving or appears to be infected because you see either redness, inflammation, pus or you start to feel feverish, please consider seeing your local family physician or sport medicine physician.

Presenter: Dr. Larissa Roux, Sports Medicine Physician, Vancouver, BC

Local Practitioners: Sports Medicine Physician

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