One of the great things I see at 5Ks, 10Ks, and even half-marathons are the growing number of youth runners participating in these events. Some kids, as even young as six-years-old are knocking out 10K races on the weekends. But like adults, those nagging injuries can begin to appear.
For kids, it’s much more important to identify and treat those injuries because their bodies are still growing. Factor in the intense approach some families have to youth sports on a year-round basis now, and kids are doing much more running as a whole. One of the things youth runners and athletes of other sports are beginning to experience is lower back pain. This is because the repetitive movements cause stress and impact your joints. The Next Level Wellness Team, a group of Irvine Chiropractors and Sports Medicine Specialists, wants to offer these preventative measures you can take to reduce pain.
Warm Up and Stretch
I may sound like a broken record, but it is so important for athletes of all ages to stretch and get their warm-ups in. Before any serious running occurs, get your body used to the movements of running. After that light run, perform dynamic stretches. Be sure to focus on stretching your hamstrings, quadriceps, and calves. One area that’s overlooked is the upper body. Remember, your arms and shoulders are working hard too during a run, so stretch those areas out also.
Own a bike, or belong to the gym? Start pedaling to switch things up. To keep legs stable, all muscle groups need to activate frequently. To implement cross-training into your running routine, try to participate in exercises that will work your whole body. You might want to try weightlifting – but start slow and light – a few times a week. I would not recommend weightlifting for children under the age of 16. I know more youth teams, and even high schools emphasize weightlifting, but some kids’ bodies just aren’t developed enough for it. Cycling and rowing can also help activate more muscle groups.
Seek Supportive Shoes
It’s no secret that bad shoes cannot only make your feet hurt but they can contribute to pain up and down your body. Shoes that don’t provide you with proper support can further heighten the pain placed on your joints, specifically your knees and lower back. Make sure to purchase shoes with enough support and laces you can adjust to your liking. It is also important to remember that shoe inserts can provide extra, necessary support. Now, kids will be swayed by the look or branding of a shoe before they will consider the comfort. If your child is running a lot, make sure they have the proper footwear.
Fascial Integrative Treatment, or F.I.T., is an innovative and advanced soft-tissue system that treats problems with muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia, nerves and joints. It is a manual hands-on therapy that corrects the dysfunctions that these soft-tissues can undergo. During the F.I.T. process we will evaluate the problematic area, properly diagnose the condition, treat it and evaluate the surrounding muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia, nerves and joints.
We currently have a Stay F.I.T. special for athletes. This exam covers all of the treatment above for just $79 ($250 value). Don’t let your young athlete or yourself suffer through nagging injuries cause by running.
Our chiropractic team of wellness doctors – chiropractors and sports medicine specialists, Vasili Gatsinaris, DC, QME, James Kim, DC, Adam Abulghualya, DC, BS, ART and Caprice Leonard, MA, ATC specialize in chiropractic and health and wellness care. Our Irvine chiropractic office is located near John Wayne Airport, convenient for people living in Newport Beach, Costa Mesa, Tustin, Santa Ana and other surrounding Orange County communities. To learn more about our variety of services or to schedule an appointment, take advantage of our Stay F.I.T. special and contact us or call 949-263-9003 today.