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Run For Your Life: Joint Pain and Running

Do you love to run, but worry about the future of your knees? You are not alone. If you take care of your body, it should take care of you and keep you running for life. Here are a few suggestions on how to make sure you are keeping your knees in top condition for life.

  • Don't run through joint pain. Listen to what your ankles, knees and hips are telling you! Deal with injuries quickly to prevent long term damage. Make sure to allow any injury to thoroughly heal before upping your running regimen.
  • Stick to soft surfaces whenever possible. Choose asphalt over concrete and grass over asphalt.
  • Wear supportive running shoes. Check out this list of running shoes ranked by podiatrists. It should steer you toward a shoe made for your foot and gait.
  • Replace your running shoes when they wear out. It is recommended that you replace your sneakers every 300 to 350 miles. Give those shoes the twist test to see if they are still supporting your feet.
  • If you are training for a long race, respect your rest days. Give your muscles and joints time to repair themselves from the wear and tear of your training.
  • Keep the muscular strength of your legs balanced and keep your hamstrings, quads and calves flexible. Tight leg muscles can put unnecessary pressure on your knees and create misalignment issues.

I sure do hope these tips keep you running for life!


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biarose biarose 7 years
I run on the oval rather than on the streets. It's a lot more boring because you're just running 'round and 'round in circles but it's so much better for the knees and ankles.
ElectroPopTart ElectroPopTart 9 years
I do yoga after jogging every time because it really keeps everything limber, including my knees. If I don't do yoga after my jog, even minimal poses, my knees SLIGHTLY hurt for the rest of the day. I also NEVER run, cuz I will not be able to keep up consistency in working out if I run.
Novaraen Novaraen 9 years
Oops...i didnt mean "positioned on the pedals right"....i meant wrong. lol.
Novaraen Novaraen 9 years
I found that a lot of my foot/ankle/calf muscle pain was caused more by me tensing up than just from the running. I hate treadmills...they make me nervous, so i tense up and couldnt run for very long periods of time. So now i start my run, think about my feet/ankles/calves and concentrate on relaxing them. It helped SOOO much. I do so much better and can run for longer periods of time. I stretch before and after too...which has helped me loads! I found that elipticals always made my knees i was positioned on the pedals right. So i stick with treadmills and bicycles now.
DeviousMuse DeviousMuse 9 years
I, too, am new to running - working on a half marathon for the end of March (not too far away now!), but am dealing with some knee pain, so I'm taking off from running until Monday, and going to sub in the elliptical on Sunday to see how it's feeling.
I was just wondering, I notice that a few runners who don't even stretch when they're done there a reason for this?
aimeeb aimeeb 9 years
Great tips, as always!
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 9 years
I used to fitness run, but not anymore. After about 15 years of doing, I developed lower back, knee, and ankle pain. I use the elliptical machine now.
I hope so too Renees3; I'm starting to train for the Rock n' Roll Marathon to support the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, our first training session begins tomorrow. I twisted my ankle not too long ago, so I guess I should check it out even though it's not causing that much pain. If you'd like to find out more or support the cause, go here:
latent latent 9 years
I run in Vibram Fivefingers. LOVE them. Barefoot running FTW!
Renees3 Renees3 9 years
I'm just starting to run. My problem is more my shins than my knees.I hope it gets better with time!! These are great tips tho!
Renees3 Renees3 9 years
I'm just starting to run. My problem is more my shins than my knees.I hope it gets better with time!!These are great tips tho!
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