Understanding proper GAIT alignment and body mechanics is extremely valuable regardless of your level of running. Whether you are a weekend warrior or an elite athlete, it is important to have proper training and consultation for your movement. We are proud to be your physical therapist of choice.

Therapeutic Associates Physical Therapy will help you avoid injury and provide you with training tips to educate runners and walkers about injury prevention. We are physical therapists who are passionate about running. Our program is designed to serve you, the running community, regardless of your ability. We will help you to improve your function, be a healthy runner, and improve your performance while keeping you injury free.

5 Healthy Benefits of Running

Overall Mental Health

Your body releases chemicals while you run which helps you feel more confident and happy.

Helps Prevent High Blood Pressure

Your arteries expand and contract while running, helping them to stay fit, which then helps to maintain healthy blood pressure levels.

Physical Strength

Running builds lower body strength in addition to strengthening your tendons and ligaments.

Joint Strength & Stability

By increasing the strength of your ligaments and tendons, you increase joint strength and reduce chances of injuries.

Increase Bone Density

Your body sends essential minerals to bones to strengthen them when stressed. As running stresses your bones, these additional minerals help increase your bone density over time.

Articles You May Be Interested In

Running Warm-Up

What does your running warm up look like? Every runner should have an efficient way to prepare their body for running prior to heading out on a run. Here is a quick running warm up designed by Paul Wilson PT, DPT, ATC to help engage some of the most important muscles for running prior to your run. Try it out and let us know what you think!

All About the Attitude; Pelvic Attitude, that is…

We’ve all heard about the importance of the “core” to performance and injury prevention. Today, we will arrive at a particular muscle of the core, but talk more about bones; specifically how pelvic attitude can force compensations throughout the entirety of the rest of the skeletal system.
Running Lab - Boise State Street_featured

Does Running Lead to Knee Arthritis?

As a Physical Therapist, I often have friends and patients ask me: Is running bad for my knees, or will running lead to developing arthritis in my knees or hips? Like any other sport, running requires some prerequisite strength and mobility for proper performance. However, it appears that in general running does not lead to arthritis, but actually may help prevent arthritis in the knees and hips.

Strength for Runners

A general misconception among avid runners is that strengthening can “bulk up”, adding muscle mass and slowing down your pace or negatively impacting your endurance. If anything, we often find the runners do not have optimal strength, whether it be in the core, hips or lower extremities in general. Runners may not require a heavy or significant strengthening component to their regimen, but to decrease risk of injury with repetitive nature of running, it is wise to include some form of strengthening.

Hiking & Trail Running: Let the Season Begin!

One of the most common injuries for trail runners and avid hikers are Achilles tendinopathies which are notoriously nagging, painful, and can significantly impact our enjoyment of recreation and exercise. The great news is that Achilles tendinopathies are easily preventable with proper preparation and condition. Try these simple activities to keep you moving all summer long!
running_hips

It's All in the Hips: Exercises for Optimizing Your Running

Whether you are an avid runner or new to the sport, it is likely that you have suffered from hip, knee, or foot pain at one point in time. Many runners experience this, and it can sometimes lead to serious issues. It is probable that your hips are to blame. Studies in the past decade have shown that one of the highest risk factors for running injuries is hip weakness. Taking the time to strengthen your hips can help prevent a running injury and potentially increase your running performance.
Strength for Runners

The 10% Rule

A physical therapist once told me, “When it comes to the body, there is no cramming for the final exam.” This was a way of emphasizing that the body can’t change its state of readiness as rapidly as the mind can. It can be easy for our minds to build a quick “to-do” list that outpaces the readiness of our bodies when the opportunity comes around (AKA the sun), especially after long months of winter hibernation.

The Fundamental Five

How you move matters - at least as much as how fast you move. A runner's ability to maintain a relaxed posture and fluid running form goes beyond mileage, intensity, and strength. Devoting time to develop the complex interactions of conscious postural awareness, stability, and mobility can become a catalyst for improving running economy and speed, and decreasing injury risk.
runnerscorearticle

To the Runner's Core

Core stability is paramount to successful body mechanics and prevention of most running-related injuries. The literature suggests appropriate training reduces the risk of low back pain and common knee ligament injuries. Core stabilization training should appear consistently in our home exercise program to maintain healthy running throughout our lives.

Dynamic Stretching: Preparing Muscles for Activity, All in Under 2 Minutes

Stretching. Every runner knows they need to do it, but it is often the first thing cut from a routine when you’re strapped for time. Here’s a quick and simple pre-workout stretch routine that can help prepare the muscles for activity and reduce the risk for injury, all in under two minutes. It’s called Dynamic Stretching. Dynamic means it is an active stretch that moves through a range of motion, and it is best done before the run itself. This is different from a Static Stretch, which is typically held in one position for a longer period of time (20-30 secs), and is beneficial after the activity.

Staying Healthy Throughout Fall Racing Season

Autumn is pretty ideal for running, so most runners plan their goal race in the fall. Runners should be close to their peak fitness after training all summer, but fall is when we typically see more injuries. As the summer ends and we get back to busier schedules, it is harder to fit in all those miles, let alone the extras to recover and prevent injuries. There are three critical activities runners should perform: dynamic warm ups, foam rolling, and core strengthening.
Yoga-Running

Strike A Pose! How Yoga Can Help Your Running.

It is common knowledge that yoga can increase flexibility, but it can also improve athletic performance and help prevent injuries. So why don’t more runners use yoga as a tool for cross training? As a runner, I know firsthand how daunting it can be to start doing yoga. You might think, “I’m not flexible enough,” or “It won’t be a workout like running.” Both of these statements are false!

The Elephant on the Track: How subtle breathing disorders can significantly impact your training and race potential.

Running is a remarkable sport for both its instinctive origin and as a foundation for other physical activities. We all grew up practicing it without any thought, and while many continued training towards running mastery, others lost their natural stride and work hard to reestablish this as part of their later lives. There is a refreshing simplicity to running, and it is often a vital component of training for all manners of physical conditioning.
Common Running Injuries

IT Band Pain: What it is and what to do about it

Have you ever been running or hiking and the outside of your knee starts to hurt...? Well, you may be suffering from pain coming from your IT band. IT band pain is common as it has been estimated to account for up to 22% of all lower extremity injuries1. It’s the pain along the outside of the knee that usually kicks in around a mile or two and then just becomes relentless. It makes those long runs or hikes literally impossible.

Running and Walking Your Way to Wellness

Working with running-related injuries has fascinated me for a long time. Runners, whether they are seasoned athletes or recreational weekend warriors, are some of the most self-motivated and resilient people I know. For years, I have gradually seen an increase of injuries among runners in the clinic.
Newberg blog - running

Run Faster, Longer, and With Less Pain

What is the biggest mistake most runners make? In my opinion the answer is failing to incorporate a proper exercise program to build a better runner and prevent injuries. What does this mean? Running requires stability, strength, power, and a proper amount of mobility. A program that addresses each of these areas will allow you to run faster, longer, and with less pain.

Keeping it Consistent: 5 Exercises to Avoid Running Injuries

The New Year brings potential for new fitness goals, new PR’s, new races as well as the potential for new injuries. We promise ourselves that we are going to strengthen more, stretch more and prepare more. We sign up for Yoga, Pilates, and weight classes in hopes to better prepare our bodies for the race season.

Improve Your Trail Experience: Think Laterally

As the weather cools and the rain rolls in after a warm and dry summer season, there is no better way to enjoy the colorful changes of fall than to head to the local hiking trails for some muddy trail runs. Running on trails can be a welcomed change of pace from road running and offers new ways to challenge your body and become a stronger runner.
Barefoot Running

Barefoot or Not, Your Feet Need Strength

The minimalist approach to running and footwear is growing in popularity. While consulting with your local physical therapist is the best way to find out if it is right for you, every athlete can benefit from strengthening the foot and ankle.
Spring Time Running

Stretches to Prevent Low Back Pain for Runners

Low back pain (LBP) is a common problem for runners and is often a reason people leave the sport all together. While numerous contributing factors can lead to LBP, flexibility is a major issue for runners. It is important to stretch short muscles that affect running efficiency and can add abnormal stress through the low back.
race day

Preparing for Event Day

Equally as important as what you do in the days, weeks, and months leading up to race day is what you do in the hours before (and after). Even though many events start early in the morning, a nutritious breakfast is important to fuel the body for the upcoming event. A warm-up routine is also crucial to your event success.
Choose Your Shoes

Choose Your Shoes Wisely!

Shoes are designed to meet the demands of certain functions. Standing and walking are the two most common functions, but others may include running, dancing, hiking (including through water), and even lounging! So as a result, the shoe needs a construction that serves that activity. Support in a shoe is for joint and tissue protection.
Running shin splints

Training for Longer Distances Without Shin Splints

Shin splints can ruin the fun of any long distance training run and can make preparation for a race nearly impossible. The connective tissues attaching on the tibia (shin bone) pull excessively, which causes this aching or even sharp pain during and after running. Frequent causes of shin splints include wearing worn out or improperly fitting footwear, running downhill or on slanted surfaces, running with poor form, and increasing training speed or distance too quickly.
pre race strength

Pre-Race Strengthening: Don't Forget to Start at the Bottom

When preparing for a race or competition, it is standard practice to include strengthening in any training program. You lift weights, perform squats for your legs, do push-ups or chest press for your arms and chest, and then finish your workout with some stretching (or at least you should). But how often do you strengthen and stretch your feet?
Running after Injury

Returning to Running After a Low Back Injury

If you are a runner, chances are you have experienced back pain at some point. Your pain may not have resulted from running, but research shows that 70% of the general population has at least one episode of back pain in their lifetime. The repetitive nature of running – amplifying and exacerbating any mechanical dysfunction – puts runners at risk.

Winter Running: Visibility & Agility

Running in darkness puts you at greater risk of injury involving unseen obstacles. Landing wrong on a sidewalk crack or a road reflector can easily lead to a twisted ankle. Road surfaces are often slick due to weather or debris, which can lead to slips and falls. Practice balance and agility drills, avoid running on uneven surfaces in the darkness, and be aware of surroundings when you run to help reduce this risk.
Trail Running Strength

Hitting the Trails Improves Running Health

Have you gotten tired of running the same road route over and over again? You may have even suffered an injury while doing the same repetitive run, resulting in an overuse injury. If so, trail running may be the perfect thing for you. It is a great way to challenge the body while training for a race and helps to break up the monotony of running on the road.
Strength for Runners

Strength Training for Runners and Walkers

Many walkers and runners, though very active, lack the strength needed in the hips and core as they enter their prime running and walking season and the bulk of their mileage. Running and walking alone do not sufficiently address these strength deficiencies. This can leave the low back, hips, knees, and feet vulnerable to injury. Therefore, a more specific strength regimen is needed.

Fall Running: Time to Hit the Trails

As temperatures cool, many runners hit the trails. Combined with the fun of varied terrain, the vast colors of fall foliage, and the serenity trails have to offer, the autumn months are known for helping new runners fall in love with running and old runners renew their passion. Trail running, however, can be challenging in many ways.
eastwind daily run

Physical Therapy Helps Maximize Running Health

Running is a very “available” mode of exercise. With the number of runners out there on the road and trail, whether they are adequately trained to be there or not, associated injury is likely to occur at some point. In order to get back to running in the shortest time possible after injury, the knowledge and expertise of a physical therapist (PT) is crucial.
Spring Time Running

Hip Hip Hooray! It's Spring Time!

The rain has finally eased up, and we are all itching to get out and stretch our legs. If your bucket list includes a half or full marathon, whether you like dashing through paint or are feeling more like a warrior this summer, hip strength is something you shouldn’t take for granted. The ski season and winter months may not have left you properly prepared for your summer running routine.

To Ice or Not To Ice?

Traditionally, ice and non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs) have played an integral role in the treatment of acute injuries. They were combined with rest, elevation, and compression to decrease swelling, reduce inflammation, and control pain. This method was believed to facilitate a quicker recovery time and faster return to activity. Recently, the effectiveness of these practices has been questioned. Just how much benefit is received from ice and NSAIDs?

Runners' Morning Heel Pain: Understand It and Heal It

A common complaint of runners is heel pain. Many medical diagnoses can be grouped under the symptom of heel pain. These diagnoses include Achilles tendonitis, Achilles tendonosis, plantar fasciitis, and flexor tendonitis. As a physical therapist that specializes in treating running injuries, a frequent question I ask my patients is, “ How intense is your heel pain when you stand and take your first steps in the morning?”
featured - marathon race tips

Avoid Injury: Marathon Race Day Tips

Physical Therapists working with runners place emphasis on the development of good training habits and exercise programs to increase muscle strength, flexibility, and endurance over a long period of time. This remains the most effective way to improve performance and prevent injury, but with race day approaching for several local marathons, now is a good time to share a few race day suggestions.
NW Runner - Healthy Runner

The Healthy Runner

Does the front of your knee hurt while you run? Does it hurt when you squat or climb stairs? What about after prolonged sitting? Is the pain mostly in the front of your knee, around the kneecap? If you said yes to these ques­tions, you might be experiencing Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome, or PFPS. The patellofemoral joint is the joint between your kneecap (patella) and thigh bone (femur).
featured-foot and ankle

The Foot and Ankle: Where the rubber hits the road

The foot has one of toughest jobs, it’s where all stability starts in standing, walking and running. Our foot has to be flexible for shock absorption when landing and be rigid enough to push off and propel us forward with gait. It accomplishes this with an intricate bony structure, strong ligaments and fascial connections, as […]
Running Lab - Boise State Street_featured

Maximizing the Minute

For runners, minutes come and minutes go. Some feel like hours and others like seconds—reflecting our state of body and mind at that moment in time. Little real benefit is typically attached to any ONE minute of running. When it comes to nurturing racing fitness for the 10K through the half marathon distance, you need to make your minutes count.
Running

Proper Breathing for Running

Like other aspects of our health, breathing is seldom considered...unless it is compromised. This is certainly the case while running. Since breathing is the means we use to transfer oxygen to all of our body's systems, saying it's "important" is quite an understatement. Improving your breathing mechanics while running is a skill that should be valued by beginners and experienced runners alike. The concept of proper breathing while running is straightforward, but requires practice on a daily basis to become second nature.

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