It’s hard to believe just how popular running is – as a way of staying fit or working off stress – it’s quite addictive. In towns and cities, in parks and countryside, runners and running clubs are massively popular. Even training for marathons has almost become commonplace… Wasn’t always that way. At school, I would do anything to avoid running, as sprained ankles, muscle spasms and torn ligaments weren’t unusual.
As an adult, I got back into it and went through a period of running 5 times a week and felt great – but like many people I had an injury that took ages to heal and really put me back in terms of training. Eddie Izzard ran 27 marathons in 27 days for Sport Relief – I can’t imagine the state of his body when he finally stopped!
There are a number of potential injuries that runners might experience…. Achilles tendinitis, IT Band Syndrome, plantar fasciitis, knee cartilage and ligament issues, stress fractures, sprained ankles and pulled muscles. But these issues may start as simpler strains or tightness and if your post run stretching isn’t adequate things can get more entrenched. My experience of runners is that niggling symptoms are largely ignored, and they will continue running until they find they can’t walk, never mind run. Then they’ve got a real problem.
Ideally, runners need to be monitoring their bodies along with their run times and get treatment before small injuries turn into much larger ones. One small injury can result in other parts of the body compensating and before you know it, that tight achilles is preventing you doing what you love. Permanently. It seems crazy to run in order to be fit and healthy but not pay attention to what it might be doing to your body.
How can Acupuncture, TuiNa and Cupping help?
All these therapies increase blood flow and reduce inflammation and tightness. Many physiotherapists and osteopaths use dry needling now alongside their given approaches, because they find it works so well. But it shouldn’t be confused with acupuncture because they also happen to use needles. Dry needling works on trigger points or areas where the patient experiences pain, whereas acupuncture works on the entire musculo-skeletal and neurological system. We use both in the Peachy clinic.
TuiNa is a dynamic form of Chinese remedial bodywork that uses the same principles as acupuncture but applies quite different deep tissue techniques to that of western massage. Incredibly effective at releasing muscle tension, reducing inflammation and along with acupuncture, boosting the body’s own healing mechanisms.
Cupping draws blood to the surface of the skin, helps to eliminate toxins, enables lymphatic drainage and is also commonly used for massage. Not painful and clients genuinely love it!
These three complementary approaches serve to deliver a powerful, yet holistic punch.
Runners, I find, just want to keep on running…. Ideally, since prevention is better than cure, whether you run for fun or are training for a marathon, it’s worth getting regular treatment. See a practitioner, say, once a month to remain supple and mobile and nip those injuries in the bud.
But if you find you’re already in pain, then start receiving treatment sooner rather than later, or running up that hill might just be a step too far.