Top 5 Most Common Running Injuries And How To Prevent Them

Runners typically put their bodies under quite a bit of strain and consequently, injuries are very common. You don’t have to quit running just because you’re scared you might pick up an injury, though; instead, you should learn about the different injuries you’re most likely to pick up when you run, and how to prevent them. We have compiled this list of the top 5 injuries people experience when they run, to help guide you; so read on to find out more.

  1. Knee Issues

Next to the feet, the knees absorb a phenomenal amount of force which could lead to a number of injuries. This risk is greatly exacerbated when runners have weak quadriceps, hamstrings and glutes—which are the primary muscles used in running. The most common knee injury runners experience is Runners Knee or Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome (PFPS). Runners Knee is basically damage/irritation that occurs to the cartilage that lines the bottom part of the patella (kneecap).

Prevention: Strengthen the muscles that support the knee during running with specific emphasis on the quads, glutes and hips.

  1. Plantar Fasciitis

The feet are probably the body part that takes the most impact from running so it is perhaps unsurprising that plantar fasciitis is one of the top concerns reported by runners. Plantar fasciitis is an injury of the heel that is manifested by swelling and pain at the bottom of the heel. It is caused by small tears, and swelling of the tendons and ligaments that are found in the sole of your feet.

Prevention: The most important thing you can do to prevent the occurrence of plantar fasciitis, is make sure you get comfortable shoes that actually fit your peculiar foot type and match the level of running that you do. Often, poor running form as a result of a weak core will be a predisposing factor for plantar fasciitis so you should make sure that you do a core workout at least two to three times a week.

  1. Achilles Tendonitis

According to legend, the undefeatable warrior, Achilles, was finally defeated when he was shot with an arrow, on his heel, which just happened to be his only weak spot. The tendon at the back of the heel, which connects the two major calf muscles, has been named the Achilles Tendon after Achilles. Regardless of the authenticity of this legend, the Achilles tendon today is a real weak spot for many runners, contributing a whopping 11% of all running-related injuries, so you probably should pay attention to learning how to prevent this condition.

Prevention: Develop strong calves by doing calve raises.

  1. Torn Muscles

The constant contraction and extension of muscles when you run, puts your muscles under a lot of stress and tension, and injuries can easily occur if care is not taken. Of the muscles involved in running, the hamstrings are the most vulnerable as in most people they are either too short  or too long (in very flexible people) or are simply disproportionate to usually much stronger quadriceps. Hamstring issues can range from tightness, to minor and major tears.

Prevention: Strengthening the muscles involved in running is important. You should make sure you devote equal attention to strengthening opposing muscles such as quadriceps and hamstrings.

  1. Iliotibial Band Syndrome

Iliotibial Band Syndrome (ITBS) is an injury of the Iliotibial Band which runs along the side of the hip. ITBS occurs due to friction between the Iliotibial Band and the femur, which is the hip bone. It is an overuse injury, and more frequently occurs when you run too much or too hard.

Prevention: Be sure to stretch properly before you go out for a run and, as much as you can, avoid running on hard surfaces such as concrete.


You don’t have to fall victim to injuries from running if you take the simple precautions we have listed here. Good Luck!


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