12 golden rules for injury-free running

17. September 2019

False ambition and a poor running technique and disposition increase the risk of injury. With these 12 principles you will remain fit while training.

Presented by «Medical Running».

1. A minimum amount of sports is necessary

The minimum amount of health-enhancing sports to protect your heart and circulation is two hours a week. Anyone who waives this minimum runs the risk of a heart attack.

2. Too much sport is unhealthy

If your running workload is 40 km or more a week, you increase the risk of doing your immune system more harm than good. Especially if you train too much too intensively. There are of course exceptions and runners who can continue to run without over-training.

3. Only do high intensities in doses

4 units of basic training, 2 units of muscle training and 1 unit of maximum performance form a pyramid. If you only ever train at a high level of intensity, you will turn the pyramid upside down.

4. Only train once you have recovered

If you do not heed the regeneration periods, you will inevitably end up over-training despite your good intentions and intensive training. A drop in performance, depression and sleep problems are just three of many possible «side effects».

5. Build up the load-bearing capacity of your tendons over 6 months

Muscles can be systematically built up in three months. Tendons and ligaments, on the other hand, need 6 months until they are strong enough for tensile loading. If you intensify your training too soon, you run the risk of tendon problems in your feet, knees and hips.

6. Reduce your stride length 

Decrease your stride length and increase the frequency. This way you will greatly reduce the load on the structures and lay the foundation for fast running at the same time.

7. Work on your running technique 

Running is an innate ability. However, mistakes can creep in due to a lack of strength, flexibility and coordination, which can lead to complaints or a drop in performance. There is no way around an anatomically correct running technique.

8. Analyse your technique

A lot of incorrect loading problems correct themselves through intensive running training alone. But unfortunately, not all. It is therefore worthwhile performing an analysis and making subsequent tweaks.

9. Vary the load

Vary your training and even train at high levels of intensity for your goals. However, avoid too many monotonous loads.

10. Avoid surprises

Ensure there is constant variety but avoid sudden surprises. Your body needs time to get used to a new tempo, new terrain, new route, or new shoes.

11. Listen to your body

Pain when running is always a warning sign that should be taken seriously. Search for the causes and work in partnership with your body. It's worth it.

12. Take your health into your hands

For many running problems there are unfortunately no medical solutions, let alone immediate ones. The best therapy is prevention. This, however, requires insight and foresight. The earlier the problem is detected, the more preventive the measure; the later, the more therapeutic, and if later still, then the more surgical the measure will be.