Sophia Bouwens, L.Ac. of JADA Studios explains...

Q: One of the things that we see a lot in the summer time is running. Runners are out everywhere and they’re running all day long.

What do you say to runners when it comes to, the issues that runners experience are generally around their knees, their joints, from excessive running, what do you say to them when it comes to acupuncture? 

A: Acupuncture in particular can be helpful for those aches and pains, that recovery, that limitation you might have in your ability to push yourself. It can free up the circulation, make the circulation "freer," so that blood is able to get to tissues to nourish them.

Oftentimes, I get runners (as patients) that ask, “what do I do for my runs?” or “what do I need to take?” And I see that the things that are kind of simple can make big changes in their ability to run or what their run experience is like. So, good shoes are a huge one. Get shoes that fit well, that give you the postural support you have. If you don’t have support from the ground up, you’re going to have problems from the ground up; your ankles, your knees, your hips, your low back will all start to come out because your foot isn’t supported correctly for your stride. So definitely get some good shoes.

Hydrate...Really Well. Because you’re using a lot of water and energy to move through your run, so please make sure you’re really well hydrated before and after, and during if you’re able to hydrate during your run. I like to see that level of hydration keep going. Some people get kind of "crampy" or they get an upset stomach if they hydrate in their run, but I do think hydration is key. Electrolytes are part of that as well. I also think that stretching before and after an activity is extremely important. Muscles that are well stretched and looser will fire better and stronger and have a better efficiency in their ability to execute whatever motion that they’re assigned to do with the body.

So make sure your muscles are, you’re not just going for a run. Stretch before and stretch after. You’ll be less sore, and you’re actually going to get more efficient use out of your muscles when they’re stretched well.