Are you running?

Kesson Physio knows that running gives you both pain and joy. Running gets you fit and keeps the weight down, it clears your mind, it works your body. We also know how much an injury can slow you down, both physically and mentally.

Looking back through history, we evolved to be able to run, and to be able to run long distances. The human body is a mechanical masterpiece in many of the ways in which it can store and reuse energy. For instance, your Achilles tendon can store up to 30% of the energy your calf muscle generates, and like an elastic band, ‘snap’ back to help lift your heel off the ground as we run. These changes let our bodies run efficiently for long periods.

Why Do Runners Get Injured So Easily?

Just because we are made to run doesn’t make us great runners. For a number of reasons, many runners develop injuries each year.

At any one time approximately 25% of runners will have an injury. Most of the time it comes down to a change in workload. Given enough time, our bodies are very good at adapting to increased workload.

If we gradually increase the distances that we run, the muscle, tendon, and bone cells can respond to this increased workload and increase their ‘strength’ and endurance. If, however, we increase this workload too quickly, these structures start to break down.

Changes in workload can be due to a change in:

  • Distance / time / intensity of training
  • Terrain, eg more hills, harder ground
  • Footwear
  • Running technique

Running injuries are common and often affect the hips, knees, ankles, and feet of runners. The impact and stress of running is sometimes hard on the muscles and joints; especially if you ignore early injury signs.

How Can Physiotherapy Help Runners?

Your physio will look at a number of areas to determine what may have led to your injury, including:

  • your running biomechanics – using video analysis we can slow down and look at the various components of your running technique
  • footwear advice suitable to your foot
  • training load – what is good, too much, too little
  • joint range, muscle length and overall flexibility
  • muscle strength: core control, foot arch control, hip, knee and lower limb control.


Once your physio has identified the factors that have led to your running injury, they will look to work with you to get you back into running as soon as possible. Your running injury may require a short period of rest in order to allow some healing to occur, during which time cross-training may be a good option to maintain your fitness.  Your physiotherapist who has a special interest in running injuries is the best person to advise you.

How to Avoid Running Injuries

The best way to avoid running injuries is to prevent them. These tips can help both novice and elite runners prevent running injuries:

  • Perform an individually customised Warm Up & Cool Down routine specific to your body’s needs.
  • Wear footwear suitable for your foot structure
  • Plan your training to avoid overtraining
  • Increase your training by no more than 10% per week

If you do develop an ache or pain, it is likely to be a running injury. If you are not sure how to best manage your running injury, please consult your Kesson Physio for professional assistance.

To get more from your running, call to book an assessment with one of our experienced physiotherapists on 01795 534113 or email us at

athletes relaxation massage before sport event, marathon muscles massage
  • Due to a skiing accident, I have no ACL. Fit2Ski has been fantastic for me. Run by a qualified physiotherapist, who understands different injuries, the circuit of activities were designed appropriately and each individual in the class stretched to their own level of ability and fitness. After only six weeks, I have amazed myself with how much more confident I am in using my knee and what I can now do!

  • I used the Fit2Ski programme as the final step in my rehabilitation from ACL knee surgery. It had elements of strengthening to build on what I had already achieved but most importantly for me it introduced more dynamic movements and exercises. It has given me the confidence to get back to playing the sports I love, cricket and football. I can’t recommend the programme highly enough.

  • 2x per week seemed like a good plan. I found starting with a small group very helpful because it meant I was able to get lots of attention at the beginning which gave me more confidence to know that I was doing the exercises correctly.