Many assume chiropractors only crack backs and necks. If you do too, you’re not alone. However, this is a misconception. Chiropractors are trained to treat a variety of musculoskeletal conditions, to battle injuries, to optimize athletic performance and prevent injury, and to enhance recovery in runners. In fact, chiropractic care is chosen by many in Raleigh, NC, including some of the world’s top athletes.
In my office, I personally treat many different athletes, and runners typically tend to present with a variety of musculoskeletal complaints. Runners that I treat in my chiropractic clinic in Raleigh, NC tend to suffer from repetitive stress injuries in the back, pelvis, hips, knees, feet and ankles.
From treating runners in my Raleigh, NC chiropractic clinic, here are the most common running related injuries I see and how chiropractic care can treat and manage them.
Top 3 Running Related Injuries in Raleigh NC:
1. Lower back pain from inflamed lumbar discs
Running causes repetitive impact on the lumbar discs. The discs become inflamed and can bulge or herniate. This can lead to low back pain, sciatica, nerve pain and muscle spasms.
Low back pain from running is a condition treated frequently in my office. Typically with spinal and pelvis chiropractic adjustments for proper mobility, electrical muscle stimulation to modulate pain, muscle spasms, inflamed nerves and stiffness, lumbar traction to decompress and pump the lumbar dics targeted strengthening and stretching exercises to strengthen weak muscles and stretch contracted and tight muscles.
2. Sacroiliac joint pelvis and spinal alignment issues
Excessively tight and short muscles, improper shoes, running on slanted services and running the same course daily can have an affect on proper pelvic, sacroiliac joint and spinal vertebral alignment.
It’s a good idea to train on different running surfaces. Try switching it up by running in the woods or on the beach. When running on the beach, try running on the harder sand surfaces and not the loose sand. This will provide a more stable surface for your knees ankles hips and low back. It’s also a good idea to switch up your shoes and try alternating the pairs that you train in.
You should also always stretch after your runs and in between training sessions. Recent studies point to a decrease risk and injuries by stretching after running and an increased risk of injuries when stretching before running. Focus on the muscles and ligaments getting the most wear and tear, like the piriformis muscles, gluteus medius, TFL, IT band, paralumbar muscles, calf muscles, hamstrings and quadriceps.
Chiropractic adjustments will help to mobilize and balance joint misalignments. When chiropractors align the joints in your sacroiliac and lumbar spine, they will move more smoothly and freely when you run providing increased performance and decrease risk of injury. Your local Raleigh chiropractor, like myself, may also utilize adjustments to your feet knees knees ankles and hips also to help you manage extremity dysfunctions.
Chiropractic adjustments combined with the proper strengthening and stretching exercises will target the surrounding muscles and ligaments of the joints.
3. Knee Pain & IT Band Syndrome
IT band syndrome is when the IT band becomes irritated, inflamed and hyper contracted. It is a form of tendinitis. The band which starts as a muscle in your gluteal muscles. The gluteus medius muscle turns into a fibrous fascia called the TFL or Tensor Fascia Lata. The TFL then turns into a tendon that attaches to the outside of your knee often called the IT Band. These muscle muscles, fascia and tendons should be stretched aggressively in runners to avoid knee pain, sacroiliac joint dysfunction, and lower back pain .
Inner and outer knee pain running causes repetitive wear and tear on the knees causes a loss in joint space. The repetitive pounding from running can wear down and damage the medial and lateral meniscus in the knees, which are considered tendons on the inside and outside of the knees. Your local Raleigh, NC chiropractor may also recommend bracing, rest and physical therapy to help manage to your knee pain from running.
Many times, over pronation or over supination issues in the feet need to be addressed with custom orthotics or proper shoes. I often find patellar tracking issues related to the meniscus also respond well to switching over to custom foot orthotics and chiropractic alignments of the patella joint.
If you are a runner in Raleigh, NC experiencing any of these problems, chiropractic care could be a good solution for you. Contact us to schedule an appointment today .
Dr. Jeffrey Gerdes D.C.