Lots of people think that running while overweight would do more damage to your body and joints than good. But what if this isn’t the case? Is running while overweight actually bad for your knees?
Pacing yourself when running while overweight will reduce the chance of knee injury. It’s important to run with correct form, properly warm up your muscles, and wear supportive footwear. Running is a great way to lose weight, but there are precautions to prevent joint damage when you are overweight.
Let’s talk about how running could impact your knees and how to support yourself when running while overweight.
Can running while overweight damage your knees?
Running while overweight can increase the chances of developing runner’s knee if you don’t take exercise precautions. Runner’s knee occurs from pressure on the patellofemoral joint most commonly from running. This results in pain around the kneecaps and can make your knees feel weak.
Because of the increased risk of runner’s knee, running while overweight is thought to be bad for your knees. But it is a great way to lose weight and build your fitness levels. As we mentioned, you need to take precautions. Start with a walk to warm up your joints. Make sure you have supportive footwear and correct running form.
If you do find you are getting knee pain from running while overweight, you can rest and ice your knees. This is the most common remedy for runner’s knee. If the pain persists, there might be an underlying condition that is worsening it. You should see a doctor if this is the case.
A regular training schedule that focuses on building your strength and stamina will help prevent damage to your knees when running while overweight. Your knee ligaments will strengthen through this while you also begin to lose weight. This combination will help stop damage to your knees if you’re running while overweight and help you run for longer.
Can running while overweight damage your joints?
Weight-bearing joints are the main areas of the body that osteoarthritis affects because of excess weight and pressure on the joints. This is another reason people think that running while overweight will damage their joints. It is a concern if you push yourself to run at a more intense pace before your body is ready.
You have less time in contact with the ground when running compared to walking, which means less time pressure is on your joints. But if you are running while overweight, more pressure will be felt on your joints with each step. The faster or harder you push yourself, the more intense the impact of your foot on the ground is. This impact shoots up your legs while your weight pushes down, and this causes more pressure on your joints.
The good news is that you can also take precautions to stop damage to your joints if you’re running while overweight. Running in moderation as a training and exercise routine can result in great weight loss results. A 1km run a day is a great starting distance that doesn’t lead to stressed joints. This reduces the pressure on your joints as time goes on. Studies have actually found that runners are less likely to develop knee osteoarthritis compared to walkers and sedentary individuals.
Quick fact –
Excess weight is one of the leading causes of osteoarthritis as the weight cause wears and tears of the bone cartilages. The fat cells in an overweight individual can also accelerate osteoarthritis as they release inflammatory chemicals.
By running properly while overweight, you can lose weight, increase strength and stamina, and reduce the risk of osteoarthritis development.
How do I minimize knee injury when running while overweight?
Running is a great exercise to lose weight and reap lots of other health benefits. But when running while overweight, it’s important to take steps to minimize the chances of injuring your knees. Otherwise, you could end up with limited mobility in your knees and potential osteoarthritis development. Follow these steps to reduce the risk of knee injury when running while overweight:
Warming up is important whenever you want to complete physical exercises. It is a way to get the blood flowing through your muscles, preparing them for exercise. You should be stretching during a warmup to loosen your muscles and prevent injuries from tight and stiff muscles. Begin with a brisk walk, stretching out all your muscles as you go. This will start to warm up your body while getting some benefits of walking at the same time. You should also complete some squats and lunges to prepare your joints and knees for injury-free running. Once you feel your muscles are warmed up, you can start to increase your pace until you are at a comfortable running speed.
Strengthen your core
It’s important to constantly be working on strengthening your core muscles for any fitness training. Strong core muscles help your body absorb force from running which will take some pressure off your knees. Your core and back muscles are important to help hold your body up in the right running position. This is also important to reduce injury risk when running while overweight.
Learn to tighten your abdominal, hip, latissimus dorsi, and glute muscles through exercises such as crunches. By completing even 20 each morning and night, you will increase your core strength to help when running while overweight.
Adjust your running form
Running with the correct form is a key step to reducing the risk of injuring your knees or other joints, especially when running while overweight. Focus on keeping your knees aligned with just a slight bend. Run in a straight line as much as possible. This helps to avoid unnecessary twisting and strain on your joints. Don’t lean forward because this pushes your weight over your knees, increasing the pressure on the joints. Make sure you aren’t slumping your shoulders, but instead are keeping your chest broad.
It’s also good to try not to land on your heel with each step when running while overweight. By landing with a mid-foot strike, your foot should be close to under your hip. This will help counterbalance the pressure a bit and reduce the impact on your knees.
Put on the right shoes
Make sure you always run wearing supportive shoes. There are sneakers designed to support specific parts of your foot that might be best for you. But you should aim to grab a pair with good ankle support and a thicker heel.
Should you wear knee support when running while overweight?
Wearing knee support when running while overweight can be a recommendation by your trainer or doctor. The knee brace helps to support the additional strain on your knees when you run.
A knee support can help with your running stability while alleviating knee pain. They are popular with professional athletes because of their constant training. Knee support is a great option for any runner if they are looking for extra support and stability.
If you think a knee brace would be beneficial, consult with a professional trainer or sports doctor to see what kind will best help you.
Is running bad if you are overweight?
Running is a great exercise to undertake when you are overweight if you don’t push yourself too much. Running is one of the most recommended exercises for weight loss. It’s important to remember to start slowly with interval training and follow the steps we mentioned earlier to prevent joint injury. Don’t run to the point of overexertion because you could do more damage than good to your health.
If you pace yourself, run with the correct form and supportive footwear, and make sure to warm up, running is a great exercise. If you do have concerns about your running capabilities, you can consult a doctor to learn your body’s boundaries. This can be taken to a professional trainer to develop a running plan for your goals. Anyone can run and reap the benefits of the exercise if you follow guidance and tips!
If you’re looking for fun ways to exercise, have you considered how video games could help you lose weight? Is ghee a healthier option for your balanced diet? Vidar Australia offers even more health and lifestyle tips and advice through our informative blogs. We also stock P2 and KN95 masks and hand sanitiser to keep yourself safe and extra healthy!