I am 65+. When I was having my morning walk two months back, I saw a poster about a 10K running event, which was going to take place in my neighborhood. All of a sudden it came to my mind that why should not I also participate. There and then I made up my mind to do so.
Although, I had never run before – I started running in earnest from the very next day. I decided that I would practice running every alternate day. The very first day I jogged about 5k. I could jog that far on the first day because I have been exercising for the last two years, which had helped me in building up my endurance and stamina. (If you are a senior, don’t miss our post on useful tips for seniors about running)
While practicing, I fell twice during my first 3 weeks of running. I felt falling twice in 3 weeks was a lot. Both have been during bright daylight and on a gravelled track. On one occasion, I bruised my left knee and on the second my right knee. Both times, I was left with nasty grazes on my right hand palm also. I am thankful that both times I was wearing legging instead of shorts, otherwise the damage to my legs would have been much severe!
Though it was painful each time, but I think my falling will continue to be part of my running experience. I’m fortunate, I only suffered some bruises and no real serious damage. I have been pondering over what could been the cause for the falls.
How To Prevent Falls When Running? – 6 Useful Tips And Guidelines
After analysing deeply, I have made a list of 6 main reasons that can cause us fall during jogging or running. Read on here to learn these causes for falling while running and follow the tips and guidelines given hereunder to help avoid falls during your runs, whether you are a young or an older adult.
Not paying attention to what’s coming in your way can be reason for your fall. You should remain alert and be careful when running.
When running on a road, side-walk, gravel surface or in a garden you need to be careful about uneven surface, protruding objects, potholes, cracks in the road, grass-covered holes or small dogs, etc. One time I fell due to an abrupt rise in the road level, which I could not notice.
And when traiI-running, you need to be careful about rocks and roots coming in your way.
Note: While trail-running, it’s important to keep your head up and look in front of you—about 10 to 20 feet ahead so that you can see in advance any obstacles like rocks, tree roots, logs, branches or leaf-covered paths coming in your way. This was the reason for my first fall. However, the difference is that I was running on a road and as I was looking ahead so could not notice that there was an incline in the road surface. So according to my experience, you should keep shifting your gaze between downwards to straight ahead as the situation warrants.
Keep Your Laces Tied UP During Jogging And Running
This is obvious, but I have seen many times my laces get untied. Make sure to use extra long laces for your running shoes. You should always confirm before you start running that your laces are tied tightly and secured. Many runners double-knot them.
Note: Make sure the loops of your shoelaces are not too big because your foot can get caught in the loop and you can fall.
Improve Your Balance And Core Stability
Poor stability and balance also can cause falls during running. Include in your exercise routine some exercises to improve your core stability and balance to reduce the risk of falling.
Practice standing on one foot and lifting your other leg off the ground in a manner that the lifted leg’s thigh is parallel to the floor. Hold the position for up to 30 seconds. Change the legs and repeat the activity. Here are some best exercises to improve your balance and core strength.
Never Attempt To Slow Down Abruptly While Running
This was the cause for my 2nd fall. I was running at a faster pace, and then it just struck my mind that at my age of 65+ I should not run fast. On this instinct I tried to slow down abruptly and I fell bruising my knees and hands. So, I learnt a lesson to reduce pace of your running slowly.
Read our post about why older adults should run with useful instructions.
Be Extra Careful When Running Downhill
You are more likely to fall while running downhill. Remember to keep your speed at a slower pace. Other important thing is to keep your head up, so that you see the obstacles well in time to avoid them. When going down the hill, you tend to open up your stride and that can make you lose control and fall.
Tip: Maintain your stride short in order to remain in control. You need to be particularly very cautious if you’re running on a downhill with loose gravel, it’s a dangerous combination for runners
Avoid Running When It’s Dark
Try not to run at night, particularly in an unfamiliar area. Due to the present days busy schedule many people get time to run at night, but then make sure you take a familiar route so that you know where the obstacles are.
Have you ever had a fall while running? If yes, please share your experience under the comments section below.
About Author: Renu Bakshi, AKA Fitness Buffhq, is ISSA Certified Elite Trainer. He passed Personal Fitness Trainer Course, Nutrition Health Coach course & Specialist Exercise Therapy course from ISSA, USA obtaining + 97% marks. He shares his experience and knowledge about nutrition and effective workouts to get you in the best shape of your life, no matter how old you may be. The author says: “For me age is just a number!”