As it is getting warmer in the New Jersey area, more people are taking advantage and exercising outdoors. One of the most popular ways to exercise is through running, especially since it doesn’t require special gear and can be done wherever you are. However, the repetitive movements involved with running can often lead to stubborn problems in the feet and ankles.

Common Running Injuries

  1. One very common problem for runners is heel pain, which is usually due to plantar fasciitis. This occurs when the plantar fascia that attaches from the heel bone to the toes becomes overused and inflamed. Since the plantar fascia serves to absorb shock in the arch, each step is another opportunity for it to become irritated.
  2. Another cause of heel pain is Achilles tendinitis, which is the inflammation of the large tendon behind the heel that attaches the calf muscle to the heel bone. Although it is the thickest tendon in the body, the Achilles tendon is susceptible to irritation and degeneration from sudden increases in repetitive movements.
  3. Shin splints cause pain and inflammation in the muscles surrounding the shin bone which can result from overuse, lower leg fractures, or changing running surfaces.

Preparing your body for exercise through adequate stretching, proper footwear and increasing exercise in small increments can help prevent these problems. For most running injuries, rest, icing, and immobilization of the area are common treatments, as well as the use of custom orthotics, physical therapy, and stretching.

No matter what kind of discomfort you may be feeling, it is important to consult with an experienced podiatrist who can address your pain and concerns. Dr. Russell Samofal of Podiatry Center of New Jersey is a board-certified podiatrist who is well versed in problems associated with sports, as well as other foot and ankle conditions like bunions, hammertoe, and diabetic foot problems. Located conveniently to serve Morris, Passaic, Bergen and Essex counties, our office in Wayne is equipped with modern technologies to accurately diagnose and treat your podiatric issues. Please call us at (973) 925-4111 or contact us online to schedule an appointment today!