Tag Archives: running

Should You Exercise Through Pain?

Should You Exercise Through Pain?

Pain is complex, and deciding whether a pain is ‘bad’ enough to get something done about it can be tough. Exercising can be a pain but can also cause pain. Contrary to popular belief pain is not always ‘bad’, as pain and tissue damage are poorly correlated. For example, migraines and muscle cramps can be painful but are not due to tissue damage/trauma.

There are certain things I ask my patients to determine whether they should be exercising through the pain, or resting. These include:

  1. Are there signs of severe injury such as swelling, bruising, locking, giving way?
  2. Can you easily modify the pain – does slowing down a little, taping or wearing different shoes change it?
  3. What is the pain response – how bad is the pain, does it go away immediately, does it last overnight? The longer it lasts and more intense it is usually a sign of a ‘bad’ pain.
  4. What is the pain producing structure? Different tissues respond differently to exercising.

Pain during an event can be different. Some would say “the pain of failing stays longer than the pain of injury!”

It’s always your decision whether to exercise through pain. However, as a general rule, if it’s more than 5/10 and is getting worse each time you do exercise, it’s probably time to get it checked out by a professional.

Shin Splints? They Can Be Fixed!

Do you suffer pain in your shins when running or playing sports, even walking long distances? Many people suffer shin splints, often chronically and end up sacrificing their sporting endeavours due to it. The good news is that it can be fixed, the bad news sometimes it requires patience! Medial tibial Pain Syndrome or Shin Splints is trauma caused to the shin by repetitive pulling from the muscles of the lower leg that attach to it. Running and jumping sports can cause tightening of these muscles, this therefore increases the force of which they pull at their attachment on the shin. This can cause pain and swelling, often severely, causing pain when walking. Unfortunately for sports the sports fanatics out there, the best treatment for this is rest! However, physiotherapy can speed up the process, the use of very effective strapping techniques and extracorporeal shockwave therapy as well as dry needling can aid recovery. If treated with rest and preventative treatment Shin Splints need not be the end of the world!

Two examples of Calf stretches that will help prevent Shin Splints:

shinsplints1 copy shinsplints2 copy

To learn more about shoulder exercises, please contact Jack Active Physio Health on ph. 4972 5155, or request an appointment today!

Benefits of Running and Jogging

Benefits of Running and Jogging

Jogging or running is a popular form of physical activity. About one in five Australians try running (or jogging) at some stage in their life. Running is an appealing exercise because it doesn’t cost a lot to take part and you can run at any time that suits you.

Health benefits of running and jogging…

Regular running or jogging offers many health benefits. Running can:

  • help to build strong bones, as it is a weight bearing exercise
  • strengthen muscles
  • improve cardiovascular fitness
  • burn plenty of kilojoules
  • help maintain a healthy weight.

It’s no secret that many runners find themselves hampered by injury when training for races or just jogging to keep the pounds off. Understanding why injuries occur is a complex topic with many variables, but how can you expect to be able to identify the cause of an injury when we can’t recall the distance, hills ran, fatigue score for each run, weights in gym sessions, and most importantly how much rest we are getting during a block of training.

Fitness takes a long time to build, and the research shows 18 weeks of steady training helps us to stay injury free. By logging your jogging, your running history is revealed and you can see how quick (or slow!) progressions are made. You may be thinking “that seems like so much effort”, but download a good smartphone app and all the work can be done for you.

Through identification of the cause of injury, rehabilitation to better than your past best is much more realistic and achievable.

Start LOGGING YOUR JOGGING and give yourself the best chance of staying injury free!

Knee Pain Problem

Knee Pain Problem

Knee pain can be caused by a sudden injury, an overuse injury, or by an underlying condition, such as arthritis. Treatment will vary depending on the cause. Symptoms of knee injury can include pain, swelling, and stiffness.

I often hear this phrase when I am treating patients, and it’s one that particularly gets on my British nerves. Commonly a doctor or consultant has told them this, due to a problem with their knees. Often it is said after knee surgery, or scans have revealed cartilage damage or osteo arthritis (OA). Clearly there are certain situations where running could be detrimental, but I find this phrase is branded around way too often. As with any structure in the body, repetitive loading cause damage, and if not given enough recovery time, will eventually lead to failure. It would therefore seem logical that long term participation in running will be detrimental to the knees. However, studies have shown that this is not the case – if it was, wouldn’t all runners get OA?

Runners actually benefit from lower pain and disability levels when compared to sedentary controls, and elite runners have the lowest risk of knee disability of all athlete categories.

Not only this, running helps with psychological disorders such as stress and anxiety. There is a poor correlation between x-ray findings and joint pain, so just because a scan shows damage it doesn’t mean it is the end of the road. Consulting with a physiotherapist allows identification of obstacles and strategies to overcome them.

So let’s beat the stigma that running causes long term damage, and reap the rewards running has to offer.