Calves muscles pain when running [closed]


U.S. Army

Dear Neil,

Thanks for your service to our country.

Cramping in the calves has several causes, but the true cause is not fully understood. Your history will likely give the most clues. True muscle cramps involve intense muscle contraction and the muscle needs to be lengthened to resolve the spasm. This differs a bit from calf pain from causes other than cramping that results in muscle spasm.

Exercise-related cramps are likely caused by muscle fatigue and may involve the Golgi tendon bodies, which normally fire to inhibit the muscle from contracting too hard. If the Golgi body fatigues, the nerve input to the muscle is overstimulated and the muscle cramps. This is an oversimplified explanation of a rather complex interaction proposed in the late 90s by Martin Schwellnus from South Africa. This may also be the cause of a “Charlie horse” type of cramp that strikes in the night or when sitting with the calf in a shortened position after an exercise...

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Calf pain is a common complaint among runners. Your calf is actually a group of two muscles located in the back of your lower leg. Straining or tearing the muscles creates discomfort ranging from a mild aching when running to a sharp pain even at rest. Calf pain can also occur if you increase the intensity, distance or duration of your workouts suddenly. Reduce your calf pain when running by adjusting your workout habits.

Stretch out your calf muscles before you begin to run if chronic calf pain is a concern. For your pre-workout stretches, focus on dynamic stretches, in which you move your targeted joint through its entire range of motion. To do a dynamic calf stretch, sit on the ground, with your legs straight in front of you. Slowly point and flex your ankle, bringing your toes toward the ground and then up to the ceiling. Do between 15 and 20 repetitions of the stretch, trying to increase the range of motion with each subsequent...

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It is quite common to deal with different issues related to legs, feet, calves, and heels when you are a regular runner. The calf pain running injuries are common as well and may be quite debilitating at times. Your calf is basically a combination of three muscles, including the soleus and the two heads of the gastrocnemius. Any injury or stress on these muscles will lead to upper or lower calf pain depending upon the causes and the muscles involved.

The pain can sometimes be mild, but it can also be a sharp intense pain in some situations. Even though you usually experience serious pain after an injury to your calf, you may witness mild pain due to calf soreness, usually without any history of trauma. The only way to rectify the issue is to identify what's causing pain in the first place. This involves paying attention to a number of factors, some of which are covered here for your understanding.

What Causes Calf Pain When Running?

You may experience calf...

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Calf tightness when running is a problem I come across a lot, in varying degrees. For some people, the calf muscles simply feel a bit tight the day after a long or hard run. For others, the tension affects them when running and can be so severe that the aching pain causes them to stop. But what causes it when there has been no previous injury?

Tight calf muscles tends to be most common amongst relatively new runners. This gives us a few clues already. It can be linked to a number of problems which can affect those new to the sport:

A lack of flexibility in general Fatigued calf muscles Inappropriate footwear Wearing high heels daily Running too much, too soon Inadequate warm-up / cool-down Muscle imbalances elsewhere Running form

Lets start at the beginning.

Reduced flexibility

Some people are just naturally less flexible than others. Especially those that have been relatively sedentary up until they start running. But the good news is that...

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Nicer running weather means more runners take to the streets to get their exercise in, and there are plenty of races to chose from all over the country to make the most of the racing season.

But many of us may have slacked off a little too much in the winter, missed a few too many days of training, and are now wondering just how much fitness we have lost.

But it is not really our fitness that pays the price in those first few runs, it is our muscles, and sore calf muscles after exercise can make even walking around painful, let alone thinking about running again!

If you are wondering what to do for sore calf muscles, you are in the right place.

In this article, we’ll look at some of the research on why the first few races make us so sore, and then provide you with the two best ways of treating sore calf muscles, so you can get back out running and enjoy the summer sunshine.

Why Do I Get Sore Calf Muscles After Running?


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Going from running with a heel strike to a forefoot strike changes the function of the calves such that in forefoot running, plantar flexor moment is higher than in heel strike running, resulting in greater muscle force within the calves. This is why many new forefoot runners get back of the calf pain really bad.

Back of the Calf Pain When Forefoot Running

A study by Rooney and Derrick (2013) found that one of the greatest differences between habitual forefoot strike and heel strike runners was that the calves provided more support during stance in forefoot running than in heel strike running. In the habitual forefoot runners, plantar flexor moment was 50% higher during the stance phase as compared with the heel strike runners. On top of that, work at the gastrocnemius, soleous and peroneal was greater in the forefoot runners than the heel strike runners, suggesting that newbie forefoot runners are expected to experience sore calf muscles. In all, increased...

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Calf Pain Exercises for Runners [Ep50]

One of the more common injuries resulting in calf pain after running is a calf strain or a tear. The biggest of the calf muscles, Gastrocenemius to use its correct name, is the largest and most superficial of the muscles in the lower leg and is loaded repetitively and heavily during running sports.

With every stride we take when running, the calf gets loaded, firstly to absorb the shock of our body weight landing, then to help propel us forward into the next stride.

Now take into account that for every mile we run we take in the region of 1500 strides. Looking at it like this makes it easier to see that if there is a weakness in the calf complex, or a fault elsewhere in the kinetic chain or running technique which leads to more stress being experienced by the calf complex, the potential for calf pain and injury is almost certainly increased.

Broadly speaking, the muscles of the calf are have roles more...

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Could be several reasons.

In the Army, we used to run upwards of 3 - 6 miles every other day, sometimes every day. Sometimes further. We'd run anywhere from a 9 minute mile to a 6 minute mile.

Some of the better runners have told me that it can be caused by poor form. This is usually by using calf muscles more instead of the strong quads, hams, and glutes. If your heel is the first thing to strike the ground, this can cause tissue pains as well. The advice I've always been given is to put your weight slightly in front of your body and your forefoot should strike the ground first.

Also, try strengthening your leg muscles by doing heavy squats and deadlifts.

When I started running in basic training, I had pretty bad shin splints, calf pains, etc. to the point where at times it was painful to walk. It took several months to completely go away, because my legs eventually adapted.

Sometimes if we would go a couple weeks without running due to field training,...

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Calf pain while running is often the result of inadequate warm-ups or excessive strain on the calf muscle or lower leg. Other causes might be dehydration, mineral deficiency, poor circulation, or wearing improper running shoes. A number of steps can be taken to avoid calf pain while running, and also prevent calf injury. These steps include performing lower leg stretches and calf exercises before running, buying the proper shoes, wearing calf compression sleeves, drinking plenty of water, and maintaining a healthy diet.

Properly warming up before a run or other strenuous exercise is perhaps one of the best tips to avoid calf pain while running. Lower leg stretches and other calf exercises should also be performed after physical activity to give the body a chance to accurately warm down. Common calf stretches include the floor stretch, wall stretch, and standing calf stretch. Both serious runners and individuals who exercise on a regular basis may find it beneficial to...

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If you are a fitness freak, then you must have experienced calf muscle pain sometime or the other. Calf pain during running is a phenomenon where the calf muscles feel strain - the reason for such strain may be manifold and may vary from person to person. Calf muscle pain can manifest in any of the calf regions, viz. lower calf, outer calf, etc. and pain in the calf while walking is as common among aerobics practitioners as pain during or after running. Let us start by taking a look at the causes and treatment of pain and calf muscle strain.

Causes of Calf Pain

Three separate muscles, of two different types, constitute the calf - two


muscles and one


muscle. The general causes of painful calves are as follows:-

Exercise Induced Stiffness: Usually, when you are a beginner or if you resume exercising after a gap of some days, your muscles, which were in a relaxed state till now, object to their disturbance and convey their...
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The calf muscles are located in the posterior side of the lower leg, and comprise two muscles. The protuberant part is made up of the gastrocnemius muscle. This, along with the soleus muscle make up the calf.

The calf muscles are the ones that enable basic movements like walking, running, and jumping. No wonder then, that they undergo considerable strain, especially among people who are active on their feet. Calf muscle strain is also a common grouse among sportsmen.

Calf muscle pain is generally experienced for a short time and is curable. More often than not, it is a direct consequence of excessive exercise or use of incorrect workout methods, especially those related to stretching.

Symptoms of Calf Muscle Injury

The symptoms of muscle pain mostly depend upon the extent of the wear and tear of muscle fibers. Depending upon the extent of injury to the muscle fibers, they are listed below -

A sudden and intense sensation of pain while getting up...
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Posted by on Wed Jan 9th, 2008, 14 comments

If you have painful calves, here are some things to watch for:

Have someone videotape you to see if you can spot any form discrepancies. Compare what you see to images on the ChiRunning DVD. A good camera shot of your running will reveal tons of great information. Check to see if your shoes are too stiff. They should be very flexible in the forefoot. If they’re not, it will cause you to engage your calf muscles needlessly. Check to see if you are holding any tension in your ankles when you run. Go to your nearest track (or beach if you live near one) and run in the sand (long jump pit). Look to see if your toes make a small dish as you run over the sand. If there’s a divot at the toe of your footprint, it means that you’re either still pushing off with your toes, or you’re holding tension in your ankles. Run across the sand until you can leave absolutely clean, undisturbed footprints with both feet.You can...
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Calf muscle pain can stop you short, preventing you from playing your sport, and potentially causing serious injury.

Recently, #5 seed Kei Nishikori was forced to withdraw from Wimbledon due to a left calf injury. This has a serious impact not only on this one important match, but on his tennis career. It also has an impact on the game of tennis since calf muscle pain is a problem that can stop any player suddenly, and possibly permanently!

Tennis involves a great deal of running, compounded with sudden stops and change of direction. The movements put a severe strain on not only the calf muscles, but on all of the joints from the hips, to the knees and the ankles. In the case of calf muscle pain, the muscles involved are the gastrocnemius and soleus, the two major muscles of the lower leg.

These muscles both merge into the Achilles tendon. When the muscles contract it enables you to stand up on your toes so you can walk, press down on a gas pedal, run, and...

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b> Pain and tenderness in the calf; Stiffness in the calf muscles; Weakness of the calf muscles; Pain when pushing off the foot or standing on tiptoe; ... Tenderness and/or bruising directly over the calf muscles; Pain when contracting the calf muscles, particularly against resistance. ...

Symptoms Signs and symptoms of Legg-Calve-Perthes disease include: Limping; Pain or stiffness in the hip, groin, thigh or knee; Limited range of motion of the hip joint. ... Heat or cold. Hot packs or ice may help relieve hip pain associated with Legg-Calve-Perthes disease. ...

Stretching—Gentle stretching of the Achilles tendon and posterior calf muscles after warm-up and before running can help prevent Achilles tendinitis and heel pain. ... In my case, what caused the pain I'm having? About Your Risk of Developing Foot Problems. ...

Stretching—Gentle stretching of the Achilles tendon and...

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Written by Tom Goom, senior Physio at The Physio Rooms Brighton. Follow Tom on Twitter.

Calf pain after an injury is expected but runners often complain of calf soreness with no history of trauma to the area. In these cases, like many in running, the key is identifying the cause and rectifying it.

Non-traumatic calf pain usually follows a fairly predictable pattern – the pain develops when running and gradually worsens as the run continues. The calf may feel tight and even stop the runner from going any further. After running the pain subsides a little but the calf often continues to feel tight for a day or so. Commonly when not running symptoms are minimal.

There are a few potential diagnoses for this including superficial posterior compartment syndrome and ‘sciatica’ but the most common reason I see clinically is simply fatigue of the calf muscles. This leads to the question of why are my calf muscles becoming fatigued? Every muscle has it’s different level...

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Running is a challenging sport, and the body requires adequate rest between runs to recover and adapt. Pain in the calf muscles during and after running may indicate any number of injuries, many of which are related to over-training. Calf muscle pain during and after running may signal a muscle strain, shin splints or compartment syndrome, a condition often confused with shin splints, according to

Pain in the calf muscle during and after running may indicate a calf muscle strain. This injury can occur as a result of a lack of flexibility in the calf muscle, an improper warm-up, or too much mileage and not enough rest between runs. Calf muscle strains typically heal with rest, ice and heat therapy. Take a break from running until the pain in your calf muscle has completely subsided.

Compartment syndrome typically happens to high-mileage runners. This condition occurs when the muscles, nerves and...

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Most commonly prescribed treatments for calf and Achilles tendon pain aren't entirely effective because they fail to take the role the calves and Achilles play in the running stride into the equation.

The fourth article in our Build a Better Runner Series (read the first, second and third articles) identifies how the calves and Achilles are activated during running. This provides insight into how runners can better focus their efforts on strengthening these areas to prevent injuries and run more efficiently.

The Calves

The calf consists of two muscles: the gastrocnemius and the soleus. The gastrocnemius has two "heads," which make up the meatier upper part of the calf, while the soleus is the more slender lower part of the muscle.

It's a misconception that the calves assist in propelling the body forward at toe off during the running stride. Recent research and understanding of running mechanics shows this isn't the case.

In fact, the calf is...

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If you have a sudden pain in the calf muscle during activity, it is likely the result of a pulled or torn calf muscle. This is called a calf strain or a calf pull. It occurs when part of the muscles of the lower leg (gastrocnemius or soleus) are stretched beyond their ability to withstand the tension. This stretching can result in small micro-tears in the muscle fibers or, in a severe injury, a complete rupture of the muscle fibers.

But there are other reasons your calf may suddenly cause you pain. Namely cramps and Achilles injuries:

Calf Muscle Cramp - A far less severe, but often painful, cause of calf pain is the muscle cramp or spasm. This involuntary contraction of a muscle is short-lived, but in may be so strong that it causes a bruise. Achilles Tendon Tear - A calf strain is similar to an Achilles tendon tear or rupture but occurs higher up in the back of the leg. The signs of a calf strain are also similar to that of an Achilles tendon rupture - you may...
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Bones, Joints, and Muscles

Muscle cramp. It can strike in your sleep or in the middle of the day. This sudden, tight, intense lower leg pain is sometimes called a "charley horse." When it takes a grip, it can get worse quickly. It happens when your muscles are tired or dehydrated. Drink more water if you're prone to leg cramps.

It might help to gently stretch or massage the area where your muscle has tensed up. Stretch your legs properly before you exercise, too.

Shin splints. You can feel this pain right up the front of your calf. The muscles and flesh along the edge of the shin bone become inflamed, so it hurts to walk, run, or jump. Doing activity over and over on hard surfaces can bring this on. You may also be more likely to get shin splints if you have flat feet or your feet turn outward.

Rest your legs to feel better. Ice helps. So can anti-inflammatory meds such as aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen, if your doctor says...

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It’s not uncommon for runners to complain of tightness or soreness in the calf complex of the lower leg. The repetitive loading nature of running gait puts these muscles under a great deal of stress as the foot and ankle loads and unloads. Any weaknesses or dysfunctions are quickly found out as we increase running milage or intensity.

Equally, as we change running footwear options, we ask different questions of these muscles. Particularly when making a change to a significantly more minimalist shoe, the calf and achilles complex is loaded through a greater range of motion into closed chain (weight baring) dorsiflexion. It’s like taking a heel wedge away from a foot which has grown up being used to such a wedge. There are a number of key exercises which will enable your body to better manage the calf loading through range needed for running.

Warm-Up Your Calves Before Running

From personal experience, I can definitely say that my calves have been saved by...

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By Josh Clark
Posted Tuesday, 2 December, 1997

While every lower-leg injury has its specific biomechanical causes, all are rooted in tight calf muscles and relative weakness in the front leg muscles. What's going on is that your tight calves are pulling up on your heel, which in turn pulls the front of your foot down. This puts strain on the muscles in the front of your leg, which unfortunately are not strong enough to resist the pulling. Ouch.

This is very, very common in runners, since running tends to exercise the calf muscles more than those in the front. As a result, you may eventually experience one or many of the injuries listed in this section. But fear not, a little rest and a lot of stretching and strengthening will fix you up and possibly make you a better runner, too.

Anterior shin splints
Posterior shin splints
Achilles Tendinitis
Pain in the mid-calf

Anterior Shin Splints

Pain in the front and...

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Back of the lower leg. The calf muscle is made up of three muscles. The two heads of the gastrocnemeius and the soleus. Usually runners complain of a dull aching pain and in severe cases a sharp intense pain.

How it affects your running

If you have a partial tear or complete rupture of the calf muscle then running will be impossible for 4-12 weeks depending on the injury. If you are suffering from inflammation of the muscle then you can resume training after 7-10 days.

Causes of Calf Pain

Ineffective warm up and warm down routines can lead to calf strains. Excessive hill work and a sudden increase in mileage can cause a calf strain. Many runners carry on running even after the initial signs of a calf strain. They adjust their running stride to increase the forefoot foot slap and decrease heel strike. This further exacerbates the condition.

Calf strains can be caused by dehydration. Many runners don’t adequately...

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A muscle pull (or strain) occurs when you twist, pull, or tear your muscle or tendon, the strong elastic cord that connects your muscle to the bone. As we age we are more susceptible to muscle pulls. However, you risk a pull if you don’t warm up properly before you exercise and stretch a muscle past its limit, train longer than what your body can handle, or if you push a past muscle injury too far before the muscle has had adequate time to heal.

You will know a muscle is pulled typically within 24 to 48 hours of the injury, as the area will become stiff, sore, you may experience loss of movement and muscle spasms, and bruising or swelling will often develop around the injured muscle.

If you suffer a pulled muscle, here are ten ways to help speed the healing and soothe the pain and inflammation…

1. Ice

Icing a muscle strain as quickly as possible will do its part to reduce swelling and soothe pain. Ice applications can be administered in ice pack form...

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