Running or jogging for fitness or competition might seem like a uncomplicated sport, yet up to half of all runners might get some kind of injury every year. This injury might be minor and they run through it until it improves or it might be serious enough for them to have to stop running or jogging. The commonest cause of these running injuries is that they merely over did it. They ran too much before the body has been given time to adapt or get used to the miles being run. Each time that a load is applied to the runner it is important to give it a rest before applying another load by going for another run. If an excessive amount of load is applied before recovery from a previous workout, any damage get amplified and this could progress into an injury. Rest is equally as essential as the training runs and that is how fitness and strength is increased and is also how injury is prevented.
As well as the too much too soon scenario, biomechanics also plays a role. This is the way that we run and different runners do it in different ways. Different running techniques will load different tissues in a different way and load some tissues too much, so that when running that may be enough to result in an overuse injury. For example, injuries like medial tibial stress syndrome (shin splints) can occur when the distance between the foot placement when running is too narrow. Those with this condition can benefit from running with a wider base of gait. Another frequent biomechanical problem in runners can be tight calf muscles. When running this causes the arch of the foot to break down or overpronate and can result in a a range of conditions such as heel pain to runners knee. These runners may benefit the most from a calf muscle stretching program. The management of running injury in general and medial tibial stress syndrome in particular depends on the cause and should be directed at the cause, whether its biomechanics to training load problems.