How to Protect Your Muscles and Joints When Running or Playing Sports

Posted on: 5 January 2018


If you're serious about running or playing a sport, you need to ensure you're protecting your muscles and joints, as it's very easy to damage tendons, ligaments and even bones if you don't protect them properly. This can lead to everyday aches and pains, as well as long-term injuries that can interfere with your chosen sport and your overall mobility. To protect your muscles and joints when running or playing any sport, note a few tips to discuss with your doctor.

Proper stretching

Stretching keeps muscles limber and also introduces more blood flow to every area of the body; blood brings healing and nourishing oxygen and other nutrients with it, helping muscles, tendons, ligaments and bones to heal faster from any exertion or damage. However, proper stretching is key; stretching while your muscles are cold can actually cause them to tear. Bouncing while stretching can also put stress on muscles and joints and cause damage. Consider taking a yoga class or following a tutorial video on proper stretching that is good for your sport, age and overall physical condition.


Rest is actually very important when you're active, as the body heals and repairs itself during sleep. You may not know to rest properly between days when you run or between games, or you may overlook a lack of sleep. This can lead to serious aches and pains and long-term stress on bones and muscles. Talk to your doctor if you have bouts of insomnia, and be sure you spend time with your feet elevated to alleviate pressure on the back and hips and allow your body to heal properly after strenuous activity.


Orthotic appliances can provide added support to your body and especially to legs, ankles, and feet. A back brace can keep your posture upright when you're playing any sport or between your periods of activity,so that there is less pressure and stress on upper areas of the body. A knee brace can help to alleviate stress on the knees when you pound the pavement during a run or when playing sports. Orthotic inserts that are placed in your shoes help to support the arch of the foot; in turn, this can mean less stress on the leg muscles and the joints of the ankles and knees, which tend to absorb more impact when the feet are not properly supported. These inserts can also help to improve your posture so that all the muscles of the body are properly supported and not overworked.