Why do I have ankle pain when running?

by | Dec 16, 2023 | Foot and Ankle | 0 comments

Do you feel ankle pain whenever you go running? This kind of pain can be a nuisance, interfering with the daily activities you love. Running can be an excellent way to stay active and healthy. When this activity starts to become painful, finding a solution is probably a top priority. Finding the right treatment for your ankle pain can restore your comfort when running. In order to find the best treatment, it can help to understand why you have ankle pain when running. Many treatments are specifically designed to address certain conditions. By understanding more about the possible underlying causes of your pain, you can be better equipped while seeking treatment.

5 potential causes of ankle pain when running

  • Improper footwear — If you run often, you probably know the importance of wearing the right shoes. Worn-out running shoes might be unable to provide the ankle support you need, leading to persistent pain. Other shoes that are not designed for running might also cause discomfort due to inadequate cushioning and support. The solution to this cause is straightforward. You can simply invest in the footwear you need. For the best results, try to find a pair that matches your foot type and running style. For example, look for shoes with high arch support if you have high arches. Quality footwear can play a crucial role when it comes to alleviating foot and ankle pain.
  • Achilles tendinitis — As a runner, improving your performance is probably one of your main goals. While working hard can be great for your running speed and endurance, making sure you don’t overdo it is also important. Overtraining or suddenly increasing your running intensity can lead to inflammation in your joints and tendons. This can result in conditions such as Achilles tendinitis. The Achilles tendon is the largest tendon in the body. When this tendon becomes inflamed, it can lead to pain throughout the leg and ankle when running.
  • Ankle sprain — Ankle sprains are a common injury among runners. If you suddenly roll or twist your ankle while running, the ligaments in your ankle may be stretched or torn. This can result in sharp, acute pain immediately after injury. While recovering from an ankle sprain, it is important to let your ankle rest. Running when your ligament is damaged can result in persistent ankle pain. In addition to treating your current injury, you can also take steps to reduce the risk of re-injury. You may be at a heightened risk for an ankle sprain if you run on uneven ground. To minimize this risk, try sticking to flat, paved areas and staying balanced. 
  • Gait dysfunction — Gait dysfunction is a condition commonly treated with physical therapy. When you see the term “gait dysfunction,” it typically refers to abnormalities in an individual’s walking pattern. This can have many causes including injuries and nerve conditions. When you have gait dysfunction, it can have a big impact on the way you run. The end result may be poor running form, which can hinder your performance and exacerbate pain. Poor form can also increase your risk of injury. If you want to find a remedy for your gait, effective treatments are readily available. A physical therapist can work with you to practice proper technique. This can make your running more safe, comfortable and efficient.
  • Shin splints — Shin splints are small tears in the bone and muscle tissue around the shin. Like many conditions associated with running, shin splints are often caused by overuse and stress. Individuals with shin splints may feel a persistent shin and ankle pain that becomes more intense when running. To treat shin splints, rest is key. Anti-inflammatory physical therapy treatments can also help by relieving pain and swelling. By pairing these treatments with rest and stretching, you can work toward a complete recovery.

Forever Fit Physical Therapy & Wellness can help address your ankle pain when running

Ready to get back to pain-free running? Forever Fit Physical Therapy & Wellness can help you achieve your goals. Our professional physical therapists are equipped with the tools, knowledge and experience to help address your pain. We believe in providing treatment that not only treats your current symptoms, but also improves your health in the long term. Your ankle pain does not need to be a source of continual stress. With targeted physical therapy treatments, you can find relief and work to prevent your symptoms in the future.

Contact our team today for more information or to schedule an initial appointment.

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