For Updates on Our Offices with regards to COVID-19, Click Here    Contact us : (847) 690-1776
Common Running Injuries

Why do I sometimes have pain when I run?

Running injuries are typically classified as “overuse” or misuse injuries. What may have caused my pain?

  • An abrupt increase in weekly mileage
  • Previous injury/incomplete recovery
  • Running experience/age: Beginners are 2.5-3 times more likely to be injured, with increased risk with increased age
  • Ignoring early symptoms
  • Running shoes: too old, too new, or transition period
  • BMI: higher leads to more impact forces
  • Gender: males are 1.5 times more likely to be injured
  • Terrain: hardness of surface may influence injuries
  • Injury Symptom Causes Treatment

Plantar Fasciitis

Pain and local tenderness beginning at the heel and radiating to arch, heel pain with the first step of the day, sore at the beginning of a run that decreases during a run.

High arches or flat feet, tight calf muscles, improper shoe wear, over or under pronation, strength imbalances, leg length discrepancy.

Ice massage after running, have shoes evaluated, orthotics, stretching calf muscles, night splint in extreme cases, Astym® or Graston®, Dry Needling.

Shin Splints

Soreness along inside or outside of shin/tibia, pain at the beginning of a run that decreases during a run, soreness afterward.

Overpronation, running in old shoes, running on concrete/ asphalt, training errors, poor hip/core strength.

Adjustment to running form, strengthening exercises for hip and lower leg muscles, correct overpronation, replace old shoes, run on softer surfaces, Astym®, Graston®, Dry Needling.

Achilles Tendinitis

Pain with possible swelling, heat and redness over the tendon, stiff and painful after running/activity, calf muscles may feel tight.

Tight calf muscles, running steep hills, increasing mileage too quickly, improper shoe fit, general overuse, poor hip/core strength.

Decrease mileage, ice, calf stretching, shoes with shock absorbing features, calf strengthing.

Iliotibial Band Syndrome

Sharp or irritating pain along outside of the knee, better at beginning of run but becomes progressively worse, pain often makes you stop running.

Tight or weak hip musculature, bowed legs, overpronation, leg length discrepancy, hard downhill running, excessive speed work, running on banked surfaces, crossover gait pattern.

Rest, stretching, ice, run on soft surfaces, shoes with ample heel support and rearfoot cushioning, strengthening to correct muscle imbalances, adjustment to running form, Astym®, Graston®, Dry Needling.

Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome

Deep, dull ache under the knee cap, worse when ascending/ descending stairs, worse with downhill running, stiffness after prolonged sitting with knee bent.

Direct traumatic injury, imbalance of quadricep muscle strength leading to improper tracking of the patella in the trochlear groove, poor flexibility, poor core strength, overuse, excessive pronation, weak hip musculature.

Ice, correct muscle imbalance, taping of the patella (knee cap) to assist with tracking, stretching.

Ways to prevent injury

  • Listen to your body: Don’t wait until you are in pain; address symptoms early on and get appropriate help
  • Ice: Has an immediate effect on reducing pain and inflammation
  • Relative rest: Substitute with activities that do not cause symptoms
  • Never increase speed or mileage by more than 10% weekly
  • Listen to your body: PAIN is a message from your body to your brain – DON’T IGNORE!
  • Don’t try to make up for missed runs/walks
  • Nutrition
  • Proper shoe wear/fit
  • Address strength


  • Lower extremities, hip/pelvic muscles, abdominals, and low back are most important
  • Cross training: biking, swimming, circuit training, lifting
  • Don’t think that running alone is enough!

Tips To Remember

  • An ounce of prevention beats a pound of cure!
  • Listen to your body!
  • Follow a reputable training schedule
  • ICE is your friend
  • Buy the right running shoes for YOU!

What is Physical and Occupation Therapy

Physical therapists/Occupational Therapists are the movement experts who treat people of all ages and abilities, helping them improve and maintain function and quality of life. Individual treatment plans are created to work towards and achieve a person’s goals to improve their mobility, function, fitness, sports performance, recover from surgery, minimize the need for surgery, and decrease pharmaceutical.

Why Physical Therapy

Despite the nation’s alarming opioid epidemic, a new survey has found that Americans prefer a nondrug approach to pain treatment. The research brief (Americans Prefer Drug-Free Pain Management Over Opioids), released in early September 2017. *The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released opioid prescribing guidelines in March 2016, urging prescribers to reduce the use of opioids in favor of safer alternatives, like physical therapy. In these guidelines, the CDC cites “high-quality evidence” supporting exercise as part of a physical therapy treatment plan for conditions such as low back pain.**

Patients should choose physical therapy when …

  1. The risks of opioid use outweigh the rewards.
  2. Potential side effects of opioids include depression, overdose, and addiction, plus withdrawal symptoms when stopping opioid use. Because of these risks, “experts agreed that opioids should not be considered first line or routine therapy for chronic pain,” the CDC guidelines state.
  3. Patients want to do more than mask the pain.
  4. Opioids reduce the sensation of pain by interrupting pain signals to the brain. Physical therapists treat pain through movement while partnering with patients to improve or maintain their mobility and quality of life.
  5. Pain or function problems are related to low back pain, hip or knee osteoarthritis or fibromyalgia
  6. The CDC cites “high-quality evidence” supporting exercise as part of a physical therapy treatment plan for those familiar conditions.
  7. Opioids are prescribed for pain.
  8. Even in situations when opioids are prescribed, the CDC recommends that patients should receive “the lowest effective dosage,” and opioids “should be combined” with nonopioid therapies, such as physical therapy.
  9. Pain lasts 90 days.
  10. At this point, the pain is considered “chronic,” and the risks for continued opioid use increase. An estimated 116 million Americans have chronic pain each year. The CDC guidelines note that nonopioid therapies are “preferred” for chronic pain and that “clinicians should consider opioid therapy only if expected benefits for both pain and function

Location Information

Elk Grove Village

555 Biesterfield Road Elk Grove Village, Illinois 60007-3306 Phone : (847) 690-1776      

Coreorthosports Center

Hoffman Estates

2380 Lakewood Blvd. Hoffman Estates, Illinois 60192 Phone : (847) 690-1776

Core Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

Surgical Affiliations

Physician and Orthopedic Surgeon in Geneva
Geneva Surgical Suites
119 Elizabeth lane Genoa City, Wisconsin 53128 Phone : 262-295-1213
Alexian Brothers Medical Center

800 Biesterfield Rd. Elk Grove Village, Illinois 60007

Phone : 847-437-5500


St. Alexius Medical Center

1555 Barrington Road Hoffman Estates, Illinois 60169

Phone : 847-843-2000


Advocate Good Shepherd Hospital

450 West Highway 22, Barrington, IL 60010

Phone : 847-381-0123