It does not matter if you are an elite athlete or a new runner, overuse injuries can attack us all. The most common are shin splints, calf strains/sprains, plantar fasciitis, ITB pulls and more. Normally most individuals will find one leg more prone to the injury versus the other. This is due to an improper shift to one side of the body versus the other. Usually the center of gravity has been transitioned to one side, which will affect gait patterns and over time will cause these types of injuries to occur.
It is important to first evaluate the pelvis and the low back region. The goal is to determine if there is a shift, rotation or a combination of both occurring. The next step is to identify the strength and integrity of the Psoas muscle and ITB. The Psoas muscle is the man flexor of the body and is integral in running. Normally one side will elicit more tenderness than the other side. Instability in pelvis, low back, Psoas or ITB can cause pain and/or tenderness in either the MCL or LCL. Lastly, the ankle joint motion needs to be identified. Most ankles do not have equal range of motion because the bones in the foot have been shifted. This normally happens because of loss of the arch.
The entire lower kinetic chain (pelvis to foot) needs to work efficiently and if there is a weakness in any one area, it will manifest in other areas as well.