I’m preparing for a marathon, and both my ankles are so sore!
Preparing for a marathon isn’t easy – whether it’s the full 42 kilometres or half, running a marathon is one of the toughest tests of endurance out there. That’s why it is important to make sure you are training and conditioning your body in a safe and consistent way.
If you’ve been training for a marathon and have developed pain in both ankles, you’re not alone! Ankle pain is one of the most common injuries that stops runners in their tracks. Whether it’s resulting from muscle overload, unsupportive footwear, or an inversion sprain while running, you need to get it sorted so you can get back into training mode and smash your goals.
That’s where professionals like us come in handy. A trained physiotherapist can not only help to relieve ankle pain, but they can also help you achieve and keep the correct running form. A physiotherapist will work with you on regular strengthening, stretching, and injury prevention exercises to ensure you’re in top shape come marathon time.
So what could be causing your ankle pain?
Ankle Strain or Sprain
Strains and sprains are often the most common reason you develop pain in your ankles when running. Whether you’re running on smooth concrete or an uneven hiking trail, a misstep or incorrect landing can lead to you rolling your ankle, causing small tears or large tearing in your muscles and ligaments that can cause problems over time if they don’t get seen to, limiting your long-term running ability. That’s why whenever you feel pain in your ankles, seeking treatment in a timely manner by professionals is always recommended.
Tibia/Shin Stress Fracture
Over time, your muscles can struggle to absorb the shock of repetitive impact such as running. This is when tiny cracks can form in your bones, more commonly known as stress fractures. If you’re experiencing pain in your shin or ankle when you run, make sure you see your physiotherapist who will refer you to your doctor if needed
Tendonitis in the ankle occurs when one or many tendons become inflamed and start to swell, which can lead to tears. There are several different types of ankle foot tendonitis that might be causing your ankles to hurt when you’re running. With ankle tendonitis, you’ll usually feel pain first thing in the morning or while cooling down from a run. Running will also be uncomfortable in some instances.
Ankle Instability and Biomechanics
If you have ankle instability, your body’s natural biomechanics might struggle whenever weight is placed on it, causing pain after progressively overloading certain areas of your ankle and foot. Unstable and weak ankles can result in overpronation or incorrect landing techniques, causing the shock of impact to be unevenly absorbed and lead to ankle injuries
How is ankle pain treated?
Depending on the underlying cause of your ankle pain, treatment may vary. It is key to get in touch with an expert physio team to help you recover and get you marathon-ready.
A sports physiotherapist can create a tailored recovery and fitness program that takes into account your day to day routine, diet and lifestyle to get you back on track.
Certain exercises such as ankle circles, calf raises, and resistance band work can strengthen the muscles around your feet and help prevent sore ankles when you run, but it’s essential to have a physio conduct a thorough physical analysis of your body and running gait to help identify potential problems.
Want to get back to your marathon training faster? Get in touch with Physio360 today and we’ll get you sorted!