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4 Common, Preventable Running Injuries You Need to Know About

1. Plantar Fasciitis
Dr. Cohen deals extensively with Plantar Fasciitis as it is very prevalent among athletes, especially runners. It is a disease caused by repetitive stress that will progress from a twinge into a debilitating injury that could require weeks of therapy to correct. This is why it is very important to make sure you run with a shoe that fits your foot, provides arch support, and enough cushion to prevent this type of injury. Sometimes a shoe cannot provide enough support for your foot and a custom insole could be necessary.Preventable Running Injuries

2. Lower Back Pain
Runners put enormous strain on the muscles of the lower back which can cause a great deal of pain. Many runners find a shoe with more cushion or a cushioned custom insole to have a positive effect on the pain in their back. While the right footwear will help the best method for both treatment and prevention of back pain is strengthening the muscles of the back with exercises like straight back wall squats, crunches, and bridging.

3. Shin Splints
Shin Splints originally described Medial Tibial Stress Syndrome but now is used to describe many stress injuries of the lower leg. Since shin splints are almost always caused by flat foot related overpronation of the foot an insole to provide support usually corrects the root of the problem and alleviates symptoms. In general runners should have their feet and gait analyzed by a professional so that this injury can be prevented before it leads to stress fractures.

4. Iliotibial Band Syndrome
Like many of these injuries ITBS is potentially easy to prevent but very difficult to rehab once the problem takes hold. Preventing this injury can be as easy as the right footwear to correct biomechanical problems. Other causes can include running too much on hard surfaces, uneven ground such as up and down hills, and simple overuse.

3 Quick and Easy Exercises to Improve Foot and Ankle Strength
Try writing the alphabet with your toes. Use exaggerated motions with your toe but try not to move your leg. Next make 5 slow, clockwise circles with each foot. Repeat counterclockwise. Finally find a towel or napkin and pick it up with your toes, drop, and repeat for one minute. These simple exercises will help with strength, balance, and proprioception as well as being great for athletes recovering from foot and ankle injury.