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Jogging and Back Pain Prevention

RunningRachel Cengia, PA-C

Jogging is a popular method of exercise to help maintain cardiovascular fitness and overall health; however, it is also an activity that could lead to back pain. Jogging places a great deal of stress through your back muscles, vertebrae and discs. If steps are not taken to minimize this stress, it could lead to the onset of back pain. There are several things that you can do to help prevent back pain from developing:

  • Proper Shoes – people’s feet have different shapes. Having the right shoe to support your foot is important. Getting advice from a shoe expert, such as a podiatrist or someone at a specialty running store, can be helpful.
  • Running Surface – running on a forgiving surface, such as a dirt path or gravel, can help decrease the amount of impact force your muscles, bones and discs have to absorb.
  • Stretching – once your muscles are slightly warmed up, it is important to stretch your hamstrings, quadriceps, hip flexors, calves and gluteal muscles. This is also important to do after exercising.
  • Core Strength – maintaining strong abdominal and back muscles is vital to preventing back pain while jogging

Your spine doctor or a physical therapist may be able to show you specific stretching and strengthening exercises aimed at preventing pain from jogging. If you are still experiencing pain after correcting these things, it is best to follow up with a spine doctor for an evaluation.

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