Running, aside from stretching is generally included as part of every exercise regimen in almost all types of sports activities. While there have been potential injuries linked to it, the benefits surpass all other known disadvantages brought by running. Running does not only improve muscle tone, mass and density but also improve the cardiovascular functioning of our body system.
Running injuries such as pulled hamstring muscles, shin splints, stress fractures, ankle sprains and among others are only but the few common types of injuries encountered by runners or joggers.
Although these types of injuries are not life-threatening, when left untreated, they predispose athletes to more serious debilitating diseases such as osteomyelitis, limb amputation and the likes. However, due to sports technology, potential injuries are rarely encountered because various modern protective gears are available in many specialty and sports stores.
Aside from protective gear, even the most attentive and the most able athletes do follow some guidelines to avoid or prevent injuries. Choosing proper footwear is the most important as it protects your feet from undue tension- tension brought about by two opposing forces, the ground and your weight. Knowing the size and shape of your feet will aid you in determining the type of running shoes to purchase. Specific type of shoes for foot shape variations such as overpronator or flat foot, underpronator or high arched and mild pronator or normal foot plant foot shapes are available custom-made or commercially available that will definitely make running convenient and productive.
Before starting any game or activity, always remember to stretch out properly, not just to tone your muscles down but also to prepare your muscles' use of different body mechanics such as bending, lifting, pulling and pushing activities. This way, the muscles will get accustomed to the elasticity requirement of the muscles, tendons and joints needed in running. Furthermore, stretching in the normal range of motion prevents damage to the soft tissues of ligaments and tendons.
Before embarking into some running activities, know applicable first aid treatment for specific injuries. Remember that element of time along with the type of emergency treatment play significant roles in the prognosis of injuries. Minor sprains and strains, for example, need rest, ice compress, compression and elevation. Although minor injuries do not necessitate the presence of a doctor immediately, it is crucial, however, to know when to call a doctor immediately and when not to, as the injury may not possibly cause life-threatening condition when a delay in the treatment occurs.
Determine the surface you run. Specific types of shoes are made for certain terrains such that your shoes intended for trekking, rock-climbing or just pure running are used only according to their purpose. Moreover, certain stretching exercises and materials are also applicable for specific running activities.