Sports Doctors tips to a healthy Bridge Run

By Dean

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- Runners and walkers alike are encouraged to just "Get Over It" and come Saturday, there will be 78,000 feet crossing the 13,200 feet that make up the Ravenel Bridge.

"I would pay close attention to people around you. The race has amazing scenery, and running with that many people is definitely exciting. But that many people packed together can also lead to injuries. Watch for runners stopping quickly in front of you or cutting in front of you to avoid tripping and getting hurt," said Dr. David Geier, Director of Sports Medicine at MUSC.

While most runners have trained to get over it and then some, the climb up the bridge may be the most difficult part of the run.

"Many running experts say it is important to maintain a constant effort running on hills and not a constant pace. With a long, steep hill, like the one runners face in the Bridge Run, they should consider shortening their strides," said Dr. Geier.

But physically, Dr Geier said the run down the bridge can easily lead to an injury.

"As for advice running down hills, I would try to maintain a steady effort and not sprint too fast on the decline or try to hold back too much and wear out your quadriceps muscles intentionally trying to slow down," said Dr. Geier.

6.2 miles, just another jog in the park for most experienced runners, but for the novice decked out in new shoes, Dr. Geier has these words of warning.

"If a runner enters unprepared, he or she might not be in optimal running shape and could suffer medical issues such as heat illness, serious heart events and more. New runners should check with their doctors and undergo a physical to detect any risks for medical complications during training or during the race," said Dr. Geier.

The bridge was designed to withstand a 7.2 magnitude earthquake, and come Saturday there will be close to 40,000 people who hope to have a smooth run by just getting over it.

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