3 common running injuries and how to prevent them

ST. LOUIS, Mo. - It's running season, so break out those tennis shoes. Before you go, though, make sure you take measures to prevent injuries.

Alicia Broshuis from Athletico Physical Therapy joins us to talk about the three most common running injuries and how to prevent them:

1. Iliotibial band (IT) Band Syndrome:

Often referred to as “runner’s knee”, this is an overuse injury of the connective tissues located on the outer thigh and knee. To help prevent this, runners should focus on increasing core and hip strength with the single leg-bridge pose. Laying on your back and lifting one knee up, kicking your foot toward the ceiling, before returning to starting position. Try three sets of 15 reps, alternating legs.

2. Shin Splints:

A shin splint is a painful result of repeated stress on the bones, muscles and joints of the lower legs, often experienced by runners who intensify their routines too quickly or run on hard surfaces. Biomechanical issues, such as over striding, can contribute to this. To prevent shin splints, progress training volume and intensity slowly, paying attention to your body for any signs of stress. Runners should also regularly practice foot-strengthening exercises—try alternating between walking barefoot on tiptoe and then your heels, doing each for five 20-second sessions.

3. Plantar Fasciitis:

This common heel pain is a result of inflammation of a thick band of tissue that runs across the bottom of the foot and connects the heel bone to the toes. To prevent this, runners can focus on calf-specific stretches, like dynamic calf-warmups, prior to running. Try standing on a step with your heels hanging off the edge. Push yourself up and very slowly drop your heels below the level of your feet. Repeat for three sets of 15.