With the Belfast Marathon only a matter of weeks away there will be many of you out on the roads on training plans to maximise the potential of you completing the marathon to your individual goal. In this blog I am going to answer some FAQ’s in relation to running a marathon and the injuries you may pick up along the way

With the increase in people out running in the last number of years there is more and more first time marathon runner’s year on year. The debate will always be out there in relation to long distance running and the impact it has on the body in relation to injuries. My take on it is, manage it. You have to have the right training, diet and treatment plan and of course clearance from a medical professional if you are in any doubt of your health.

Frequently asked Questions  : Injuries

These answers will give you which is most commonly seen in the clinic. It is clear that each person will be consulted differently than the other with the correct treatment plan for you to eliminate your pain and allow you to continue to prepare for your marathon.

I’ve been training for a marathon but have picked up an Achilles injury which I only feel after a number of miles.

The Achilles tendon is a muscle at the back of your heel. It will be the most common injury picked up by runners. The main cause of this injury is the imbalance of the ankle joint and the inability for the joint to take the constant force. Which basically means your foot is leaning off balance when striking the ground. The treatment which will maximise your chances of completing the marathon includes, Frequency specific microcurrent on the calves into the plantar fascia. The main purpose will be to reduce inflammation and ensure the fascia is pliable. The physical therapy treatment will eliminate any trigger point activity and imbalance in the muscle structures. If there is enough time before the marathon you would be introduced to specific insoles to address the imbalance, after correct treatment has occured. This would also be the long term plan to prevent reoccurrence

During my marathon training I have picked up a hip injury which is very sore when going up stairs or when trying to increase the pace.

Hip flexor dominance is a major player in relation to injuries around the hip. The Iliopsoas and Rectus Femoris are the main hip flexors. The reason they are involved so much is we contract them during walking, sitting, standing, jumping and running. The problem being we sit at a desk all day or we are driving our cars continuously, this causes the shortening of the iliopsoas and the continuous activation of the same. The result of this is our gluteals will not fire correctly and our IT band will then become more involved in hip extension rather than a stabiliser. This causes the pain in the upper hip along with the original iliopsoas trigger points. The treatment plan will lengthen the hip flexors, eliminate the pain, balance the kinetic chain and make a real difference to your running ability.

I have been getting a lot of knee pain recently it feels as if my knee is going to give way. I haven’t been able to run as I just don’t trust it.

In this case if there hasn’t been an impact received to the knee, the most likely causes are the Iliotibial band and the Quadriceps. It is a very common treatment that occurs in amgtherapy and with a lot of success as the source is being dealt with in relation to the treatment. The treatment will include the addressing of the Gluteals and their relationship with the abductor and adductor muscles. The hip flexion will need addressed which is more than likely the cause of the formation of trigger points in the Quadriceps which causes knee referral. With the full kinetic chain addressed and the force balanced you will feel in more control and will be able to resume running at your nearest convenience pain free

Marathon training


I have being experiencing pain in the front of my shins during running, it is a reoccurring injury over the past year. Is there any treatment that would eliminate the pain

Yes, physical therapy treatment will eliminate the pain by treating the surrounding muscle tissues for myofascial trigger points, trauma, and ischaemia. “Shin splints” is a common term used for this pain. However shin splints is only when the bone has had a stress and the most common experience of “shin splints” is actually a trigger point in the muscle tissue creating a similar pain. This is why it more than likely is a reoccurring issue as the source is not being treated. Once all trigger point activity is eliminated and the kinetic chain addressed, your treatment plan would then include the reasons for the stress to occur in the first place. This more often than not is muscle imbalance around the ankle joint. In the case of actual shin splints in the bone structure the Frequency specific microcurrent can address the issue with specific bone frequencies

I have being experiencing a real numbing pain in my quads at the start of my run, as I continue to run it then starts to feel more like a dead leg which completely stops me in my tracks. Any solution?

Yes, this is coming from tightness in the Quadriceps. Some treatment of the Quads using muscle energy techniques and neuromuscular techniques will allow for more pliable tissue. What is often the case is that there will become an imbalance of the structure and the tissues can become bound and stuck to their surrounding structures. Each of the quads have a different function and this bound tissue will limit the ability to complete these actions. This in turn will cause the tightness and the formation of trigger points which may be the numbness that you are feeling. In amgtherapy’s clinic you will have a full evaluation of where the tension is coming from including the treatment of the nervous system. This will enable you to return to your training pain free.

I am having continuous hamstring bother and it has been on off for a number of months.


It’s a very common injury and one that is continuously treated incorrectly. In the clinic I will always here of “the rub” of the hamstrings. This is fantastic in a pre/post event scenario but to eliminate the reason you are getting hamstring bother you have to go a lot deeper than that. It is a complicated structure to get right, but the main thing is that it is not the hamstrings that are the problem. The hip is the most common source of the pain with vertebrae imbalance also quite common. There are many reasons why the hip would cause hamstring bother, but the most common one will be hip flexor dominance. There are trigger point referrals to the hamstrings that Aiden treats in the clinic that come from the gluteals, IT band, groin, quads, Psoas and abdominals. If the hamstring is “getting a rub” and the main source of the pain is not being addressed it most certainly will continue to return. In the above treatment it is also important to note that the hamstrings will also be treated but in most cases as a secondary target.

I have had pain in my lower back since starting to run, I used to get it on off since running it’s become more common

Again another very common injury that is treated in Aidens Physical therapy clinic. There are a number of reasons that this can happen. The most common one is hip flexor referral. People tend to forget that the vertebrae have muscles that attach towards the front of the body and iliopsoas is one example. It attaches from your femur (leg bone) to Lumber spine 4 and 5. The tightening of this muscle will cause movement anteriorly of the vertebrae, this in turn will cause the tightening of the gluteal muscles along with the Quadratus Lumborum (QL’s). The treatment of these muscles along with the balancing of the kinetic chain will allow a more pain free range of movement

I have been getting a numb cold feeling in my hand when running long distance is there anything we can do

Yes. This is a referral which involves the nerves, the cardiovascular system and the musculoskeletal system. There is a compression in the kinetic chain. Most likely the shoulder girdle but could also be the spine, or referral from the Latissimus Dorsi (Lats). Your treatment plan will include a full body assessment and the addressing of the tissues which are causing the compression. The treatment length will depend on the individual client but will not affect your training plan

If I have torn a muscle weeks before the event am I ruled out?

Most certainly not, obviously precautions will need to be in place but Frequency specific microcurrent can reduce inflammation increase the production of ATP which in turns increases the ability to heal faster. There have been a number of cases where clients have regained full ability in a reduced period of time. Each individual will be different but the idea of “that’s it there’s no point” should not enter your mind.

Thanks for reading, best of luck to any marathon runners out there who are in training for upcoming marathons. If there is any questions that haven’t been addressed in the blog or you want more detailed information please feel free to contact me in the contact us section with your query