Ideas to reduce the risk of injury whilst running

This list has been compiled by Southampton Physiotherapist and running expert, Phil at YOU Massage Southampton

Running on hard services increases the risk of injury. Research does not show a strong link, but it’s probably best to run on a variety of surfaces as this varies the loading pattern.

Here are some more Ideas to reduce the risk of injury

  • Have a training strategy!
  • Increase volume no more than 10% a week
  • Never increase intensity and volume simultaneously
  • Your longest run should be less than half your total weekly mileage
  • Sleep well – this is when the body recovers.
  • Good nutrition. It is now thought that distance runners need higher levels of protein to ensure recovery. Also, vitamin C has an affinity to collagen and so may aid tendon repair.  Runners are commonly found to be low in iron and vitamin D, essential for tissue repair and performance.
  • Strength training. There’s growing evidence (more than stretching!) that exercises such as squats, lunges and calf raises can protect against injury.
  • The ideal cadence, or step rate, is thought to be 170 – 190 per minute. If your cadence is less than 170 you could be over striding, increasing the stress on the body.  Simply by shortening your stride slightly can help.  Over striders tend to be noisy on their feet and heel strikers.  Some GPS watches show cadence.
  • Know when not to run. Try the hop test – you should be able to hop quickly on each leg x 20 times with no pain to run.  Increasing pain when running, increased pain the next day, pain above 5/10 and running with a limp are indicators that you should not run and be checked.

Performance Indicators

Below is mainly from Frank Horwill, the late and great running coach.

  • Marathon potential is 5 x 10K time minus 10 minutes
  • All distances are connected – to run a good marathon you need to run a good 10K, to run a good 10K you need to run a good 5K, need to run a good mile, need to run a good 400m. Therefore training should reflect this with multi-paced runs. https://www.runnersworld.co.uk/rws-training-pace-calculator  is a link which explains the different paces and can auto calculate your paces.
  • Frank Horwill described the 4 second rule – for example, if your best 400m time is 60 seconds, your best possible 800m is 2:08 (64+64). For 1500, add another 4 seconds per lap, and so on. So everything is based on your best 400m time.
  • Optimum training mileage for a marathon is thought to be 70 miles a week. Although Mo Farah does 120 a week but then he’s a full time athlete

Book in to see a Runners Physio for your optimum health report and guidance for injury prevention, Book online today, follow this link >