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Physical Therapy for Runners: Why, When, Where, What, Who

Updated: Aug 27, 2023

5 W’s for Runners Seeking Physical Therapy

Who should seek physical therapy?

What type of physical therapy should I seek?

Where should I seek physical therapy?

When should I seek physical therapy?

Why should I seek physical therapy?

Who Should Seek Physical Therapy?

Any runner of any age or level. Running is a great way to stay in shape but it doesn’t come without its consequences. Injuries are inevitable and come with the territory whether it's shin splints or stress fractures, a pulled muscle or twisted ankle, etc. These injuries shouldn’t deter you from the sport, in fact, they should be the reason for seeking physical therapy to prevent that stuff from happening.

Physical therapy comes in all forms, from intensive care and recovering from surgery to regularly stretching and strengthing muscles to prevent injuries.

What Type of Physical Therapy Should I Seek?

The type of physical therapy you should seek should be based on your goals. This could be trying to improve your form, flexibility, balance, endurance, strength, injury recovery, injury prevention, etc.

Establishing your goals and communicating those to your physical therapist will help with developing the best plan for you. Plans are personalized to the client so to determine the type of physical therapy methods you need a goal first.

Where Should I Seek Physical Therapy?

Physical therapy can take place in person or virtual. Physical therapy is offered in a variety of settings including:

  • At Home

  • Assisted Living

  • Cardiac Rehab Centers

  • Hospital

  • Nursing Home

  • Outpatient Clinic

  • Private Medical Offices

  • School

  • Sports Medicine Centers

Licensed physical therapists work in a range of sports and fitness settings, as well as healthcare - outpatient offices, private practices, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes, home health, hospices - schools, occupational settings, government agencies, and research centers.

When Should I Seek Physical Therapy?

Anytime. No matter what point you are at in your running career, if you want to improve performance, endurance, etc. it's never too late to seek guidance from a physical therapist.

Many runners tend to focus on their physical fitness with regard to injury prevention, but they should also consider how their bodies move when they run.

Why Should I Seek Physical Therapy?

Physical therapists are trained professionals who have gained specialized knowledge and skills in treating patients who suffer from injuries or diseases. They may help people recover from surgery, manage pain, reduce stress on muscles and joints, and prevent injuries during exercise and sports participation.

Physical therapists are trained to evaluate the body’s movement patterns and determine how that movement is affecting pain or dysfunction in the joints and muscles. They also know how to prescribe exercises that will fix what is causing your problems so that you can return to activity safely (and enjoyably).

Virtual Physical Therapy for Runners

Physical therapy for runners focuses on muscles that support the lower back and pelvis as well as calves, ankles, and feet. The right exercises will strengthen your body so that you can run faster or for longer distances without pain or discomfort.

Physical therapy can seem like such a time commitment for some but with virtual physical therapy sessions, you can easily fit it into your schedule. Schedule your initial evaluation today at T.R.A.C. Get the best care from a physical therapist with over 25 years of experience.


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