FACT: 80 per cent of Canadians will suffer from back pain in their lifetimes.

The Canadian Chiropractic Association is working hard to reach out to the public and all health care practitioners to create awareness about back pain – its prevention and treatment.

There are many things you can do to maintain a healthy spine and prevent muscle and joint injuries. Click here and take the quiz to see if anything’s holding you back!



Less is More – Each year, patients attend our clinic suffering from the effects of training for a long-distance race, including a half or full marathon. Here are some guidelines as to why and how best to avoid those common injuries that prevent so many people from achieving their lifetime goals.

Fortunately, today’s modern runner and the guidelines given to complete a marathon do not necessarily recommend grinding out 100 miles per week! as was common in the early 1980s. The average runner does half this amount and suffers little or no decrease in competitive ability (Sheehan G. Physician Sports Medicine 19:21 1991).

Quick Facts on Shock Absorption:

Initial ground contact forces

  • Vertical Thrust 2-3 times Body Weight
  • Forward Shear 50% Body Weight
  • Medial Shear 10 Times Body Weigh

These forces must be dissipated in less than 1/3 of the time(0.2 secs) than available when walking. So it is vital to have a fully functioning body to make this possible.

Peak impact forces generally occur in the first 20-30ms after foot contact. Again, it is vital to have good footwear and a fully functioning body, especially your foot and ankle! NOTE: We prefer to adjust your foot and ankle to make them function properly rather than prescribing an orthotic to redistribute the stress on your foot. “Fix the problem, don’t put a bandaid on it!”

Runner’s feet contact the ground 800-2000 times per mile (50-70 times per minute for each foot). This means the dissipation of 100 tons of force per mile!

Deterioration of shock absorption in running shoes:

  • After 50 miles 25% Loss
  • After 100-150 miles – 33% loss
  • After 250-500 miles – 40% Loss!

Effects of Altered Posture – Often we work for a number of years in a particular style of job that has led to consistently being in a particular position, ie. Computer or seated desk job, Long distance driving or heavy manual labor of a repetitive nature. This may lead to muscle overuse, imbalance, and postural change. Exercise does not always create injuries but continuous and repetitive high impact sport such as running will eventually cause a breakdown. Hence less is better, Quality not Quantity

Recommendations – Make a plan! One long run per week. Two shorter runs of between 30 and 40 minutes one practicing quality of running ie. good breathing patterns, smooth arm work and gliding footwork landing on the heels and rolling off the forefoot concentrating on using as little energy as possible. always leave 48 hours between runs. Allow in your plans not to increase any long run by more than 10 – 15 mins duration, and whatever you do, DO NOT suddenly apply the time of your long run to a new course that has long uphills or downhills! This is guaranteed to bring on an attack of shin splints or patella pains. If you plan to attempt a fast run time and you live within range of the marathon you intend to compete in, try this. Break the Marathon into three parts, run the three different parts as you weekday run Then for your long run the two halves, follow this by two times two thirds and finally two three quarters. Nine complete runs that will familiarise your body to the course and give you a good idea as to the time you should complete the course in.

Lastly, don’t forget about STRESS. – Many people these days work very long hours under very hard conditions. Many people suffer from home related stresses. Some have financial worries. With this in mind, the adding of yet another physical stress may lead to a functional breakdown. Signs of this are picking up colds easily, over tiredness erratic behavior and injuries that will not resolve themselves. The Wise Runner recognizes that it is necessary to ensure that the training schedule includes time for restful sleep and food plus a break from the training occasionally.

Running Injuries

There are many common injury presentations for runners. Achilles Tendonitis, Patellar tendonitis, Shin splints, Plantar Fasciitis, Hamstring injuries Quadriceps, Iliotibial tract External rotators, and Back injuries are just a few. Many of these injuries are preventable given the correct stretching and muscle balancing exercises. Often there is dysfunction in the joints around the hips, back, and ankles which prevent the huge forces developed while running from being dissipated throughout the body. Poor ability of some joints to rotate will mean compensating elsewhere. Usually in the short run, this may not cause a problem, however, when stepping up to the longer races such as the marathon, the breakdown will occur at the weakest point.  Speak with Dr. Karpuk if you are experiencing foot or ankle troubles.  Many of these troubles can be caught and corrected with Chiropractic adjustments to the appropriate area.  Orthotics are often not needed and in some cases can even make some problems worse.

Correct footwear for your body weight and size are essential. Some studies have shown that many running shoes can lose 50% of their shock absorption capabilities within the first 50 miles.

Pregnancy and Chiropractic Care

Chiropractic Care can be safe and effective during all stages of pregnancy. Chiropractors can help the body adapt to the pregnancy changes and reduce the physical discomfort felt during these changes. Further, we can help by giving you info about exercises and nutrition to help prepare for the wonderful event 9 months later. Dr. Karpuk has three small children and he helped his wife throughout her pregnancies.  He has helped hundreds of women throughout their pregnancies. All of our health care team members are happy to work with your family doctor or midwife. Call us today if you have any questions.


For more information on Chiropractic please see the following websites:

BC Chiropractic Association:

Canadian Chiropractic Association: