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Prevent or Reduce Back Pain as a Runner

More health enthusiasts than ever are lacing up their shoes and hitting trails, roadways, and even treadmills to get their exercise. Not only does running have benefits such as weight loss, it is also one of the best ways to relieve stress and produce the chemicals that result in feelings of happiness and contentment. Unfortunately, many runners will hit one major roadblock at some point in their career, and that is back pain. Back pain while running will bring even the most tenacious runners to a grinding halt, but there are a few steps that can be taken to reduce pain around the back or prevent it from ever happening in the first place.

One of the biggest issues with running comes down to shoes and feet. Few runners, especially those that are new to the pastime, take the proper amount of time to pick out their shoes. Many simply go with popular brands or the most stylish options, but this can turn into a fiasco down the road. The ideal way to choose a pair of running shoes is to have a specialist take a close look at one’s gait, or the movement of their body and feet while they are running. The actual shape of the foot is important as well and a lack of arch support or too much arch support could result in chronic back pain while running.

Another common issue that many avid runners will face is the lopsided development of their muscles. Those that stick to running as their primary form of exercise may come to find that various muscles are extremely toned while others have become atrophied. When this takes place, generally with the hamstring running along the back of the legs and up into the lower back, the body will attempt to overcompensate. There are two options to prevent this issue. The first is to fully stretch the hamstring multiple times a day. This can be done in a variety of ways and will often relieve tension and reduce the muscles from overworking during running. The second option is to crosstrain with other sports and activities such as weights, swimming, and core training.

When all else fails, the final issue may be the runner’s body type. Uneven hips and legs are a serious issue and one that very few runners considering when they begin their training. This can lead to potentially permanent damage when not taken care of. This is why all runners should consult with a physician if the pain does not ease in the coming weeks and months. With a specialist by one’s side, however, it often only takes a minor treatment to reduce the pain and hit the track once again.


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