Mend Physical Therapy Blog and Injury Information

Can Running Overuse Injuries Be Prevented?

March 23, 2023

In our Lafayette Physical Therapy and Boulder Physical Therapy clinics we commonly examine and treat runners with overuse injuries. The article “Risk factors for overuse injuries in short- and long-distance running: A systematic review” examines the risk factors associated with overuse injuries in both short and long-distance running. The study involved a systematic review of various databases and the analysis of over 40 articles to identify the most common risk factors associated with overuse injuries. The results of the study identified several factors, including running experience, running frequency, running surface, footwear, and previous injury, among others.

One of the main findings of the study was that increasing running frequency and intensity were significant risk factors for overuse injuries. This is particularly true for inexperienced runners who are more likely to suffer from injuries as a result of overtraining. Additionally, the study found that running surface, footwear, and previous injury history were also important risk factors. Runners who run on hard surfaces, wear shoes with inadequate cushioning, or have a history of previous injuries are at a higher risk of developing overuse injuries.

The study has significant implications for both novice and experienced runners. By understanding the risk factors associated with overuse injuries, runners can take steps to reduce their risk of injury. For example, runners can gradually increase their training frequency and intensity to avoid overtraining. Additionally, runners can ensure they have appropriate footwear and avoid running on hard surfaces. Overall, the study highlights the importance of taking a proactive approach to injury prevention in running.

Are you a runner at risk of an overuse injury? Are you looking to maximize your running performance or are you recovering from an injury and hope to get back to running? At MEND we specialize in examining the whole runner, from a physical exam to what happens during the gait cycle. Schedule an appointment with one of our running specialists to get an evaluation. Curious about exercise routines that can help improve your running, visit our YouTube page and check out our playlists directed at runners. Read about running on our blog.


1. van Poppel D, van der Worp M, Slabbekoorn A, van den Heuvel SSP, van Middelkoop M, Koes BW, Verhagen AP, Scholten-Peeters GGM. Risk factors for overuse injuries in short- and long-distance running: A systematic review. J Sport Health Sci. 2021 Jan;10(1):14-28. doi: 10.1016/j.jshs.2020.06.006. Epub 2020 Jun 12. PMID: 32535271; PMCID: PMC7856562.