If you're reading this, chances are you are a runner in pain. Perhaps you woke up with a stiff back this morning and don’t even want to think about going for a run. Or maybe your heel is so sore you can’t put any weight on it. Or perhaps your knee pain has been getting worse over a long period of time for no apparent reason. Maybe you are suffering with metatarsal pain that causes your foot to cramp when you run too far, or you have pain around your hip or in your buttock that’s affecting your gait. Perhaps you strained a hamstring, hip flexor or glute muscle. Iliotibial band syndrome (ITB), shin splints or Achilles tendonosis?
Running injuries are vast and complex, and finding the right treatment quickly is often difficult. As a life-long runner myself, I have experienced virtually every running injury first-hand, and know all too well how frustrating it is to have the activity you love curtailed by pain. What I have learned from 50 years as a competitive runner, and over thirty years as a chiropractor, running coach and rehab specialist, is that the cause of a running injury may not be as simple as it may appear on the surface. Once I have diagnosed the underlying cause of your running injury, I will provide you with my recommendations for getting better in the shortest amount of time.
Yes, we treat running injuries... lots!
How we treat running injuries
Finding someone with the knowledge, experience and right ‘tool box’ of treatment tools to help you get back running quickly is paramount. My experience is that the best practitioners for running injuries are those with a strong running background themselves. They understand running, they think running, they live it. They know the biomechanics of running, but also the psychology of runners and how best to harness this to enhance recovery. It is this insight and experience that I bring to every runner who limps into my office.
Combined, I have been a runner and in practice helping runners for over 80 years. Yes, that’s a crazy amount of time! While the bulk of this time has been spent learning the hard way, first-hand, about various running injuries and how best to recover from them, I’ve also had the privilege of helping many injured runners get better. It begins with getting the diagnosis right. To do this, I start with a detailed running history, followed by a thorough examination of the area of complaint. I will examine your gait and posture, and perform specific strength, mobility and balance tests. Once I understand the precise nature of your injury or condition, and what caused it, I can begin to help you recover.
Like most chiropractors, I started practice with a pretty meager ‘tool box’ of techniques and approaches to pick from. But doctors have good reason to use the word ‘practice’… As the years and decades went by, my experience and learning grew, and my tool box became filled with techniques that are not only evidence-based and cutting-edge, but also ones I have found personally, though extensive trial and error, to be the most effective.
Depending on the nature and severity of your running-related injury, my experience will assist me in selecting the best treatment approach or technique to help you. For runners with particular joint problems, this may be precise, gentle joint adjustments using my hands or an instrument. For patients with muscle or tendon conditions I use a combination of techniques such as TRIGENICS, A.R.T., PNF or trigger point therapy, among others, to help restore normal muscle tone and function. Specific strength and balance exercises may be introduced to address particular deficiencies. I might recommend particular strength, stretch or other exercises and techniques to use at home or at the gym. For some runners, their foot and gait mechanics might benefit from custom orthotics, which I can prescribe, fit and have made specifically for their feet and running needs.
Years of experience combined with my post-graduate training has taught me that many runners with chronic running-related injury have an underlying postural or spinal alignment problem. It is critically important for long term symptom relief that these alignment issues are correctly addressed. It goes without saying that if your body is out of alignment, and you’re putting a lot of miles on it, something is going to break. Therefore, as soon as your running-related pain is betting better, I may recommend a program of Structural Rehabilitation using a specific technique called Chiropractic Biophysics (CBP). The goal of Chiropractic Biophysics is to improve your postural alignment to as close to normal as possible. Chiropractic Biophysics is among the most researched, advanced, results-oriented and effective chiropractic techniques.
Besides teaching you key exercises to help resolve your running injury, I will also provide you with the knowledge and on-going support so you can help yourself stay injury-free.