Posted on 24th Mar 2022 at 11:13am
Injury management and rehabilitation
The injuries in runners if not well managed in time could turn into a chronic injury which can take a long time to heal. Furthermore, if the injury is not well treated and well rehabilitated, the risk of re-injury increases. This complicates the process of recovery more and leads to incomplete healing of the tissue (Thomopolous et al, 2015 (1)). There are several ways to manage the musculoskeletal injuries such as:
- Physiotherapy- According to several studies, regular physiotherapy sessions can potentially lead to reduction in the risk of injuries and build a greater muscle capacity in athletes (Mellinger, 2019 (2)). This includes pain management, maintaining muscle strength, endurance and flexibility, improving coordination, balance.
- Rehabilitation – Athletes or runners who undergo preventive rehabilitation are less likely to have repetitive stress injuries (Yeung, 2001 (3)). As the training increases strength, endurance and flexibility in the muscles and joints this reduces the joint and muscle load.
- Biomechanics assessment- Assessment of biomechanics and correction of biomechanics and alignment can lead to quicker recovery and better running pattern. If a runner has a poor biomechanics pattern, the body’s capacity to absorb external forces reduces creating a larger impact on the joints leading to increased risk of injuries (Dugan et al, 2005 (4)).
- Strength and conditioning- strength and conditioning for specific muscles of running such as hamstrings, gluteals, quadriceps, core muscles, calf muscles etc could prevent injuries and lead to optimal loading of the muscles and the joints.
- Appropriate footwear and insoles- Some studies have shown the importance of proper footwear and use of insoles while running could positively impact the running pattern as it could potentially correct the altered running pattern throughout the phases of running. (Sun et al, 2020 (5))
- Thomopoulos S, Parks WC, Rifkin DB, Derwin KA. Mechanisms of tendon injury and repair. J Orthop Res. 2015 Jun;33(6):832-9. doi: 10.1002/jor.22806. Epub 2015 Mar 2. PMID: 25641114; PMCID: PMC4418182.
- Mellinger S, Neurohr GA. Evidence based treatment options for common knee injuries in runners. Ann Transl Med. 2019 Oct;7(Suppl 7):S249. doi: 10.21037/atm.2019.04.08. PMID: 31728373; PMCID: PMC6829001.
- Yeung EW, Yeung SS. A systematic review of interventions to prevent lower limb soft tissue running injuries. Br J Sports Med. 2001 Dec;35(6):383-9. doi: 10.1136/bjsm.35.6.383. PMID: 11726471; PMCID: PMC1724431.
- Dugan SA, Bhat KP. Biomechanics and analysis of running gait. Phys Med Rehabil Clin N Am. 2005 Aug;16(3):603-21. doi: 10.1016/j.pmr.2005.02.007. PMID: 16005396.
- Sun X, Lam WK, Zhang X, Wang J, Fu W. Systematic Review of the Role of Footwear Constructions in Running Biomechanics: Implications for Running-Related Injury and Performance. J Sports Sci Med. 2020 Feb 24;19(1):20-37. PMID: 32132824; PMCID: PMC7039038