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Rehabilitation and Return to Running After Lower Limb Stress Fractures

Liem, Brian C. MD1; Truswell, Hallie J. BA2; Harrast, Mark A. MD1

Current Sports Medicine Reports: May/June 2013 - Volume 12 - Issue 3 - p 200–207
doi: 10.1249/JSR.0b013e3182913cbe
Training, Prevention, and Rehabilitation: Section Articles

Lower limb stress fractures are common injuries in runners. In terms of treatment, much of the medical literature has focused primarily on rest and cessation of running, but little has been written about the rehabilitation and functional progression of runners following a lower limb stress fracture. This article reviews the scientific evidence behind common rehabilitation concepts used for runners recovering from these injuries and also discusses sport-specific training modalities such as deep water running and antigravity treadmill training. Overall this article is intended to be a practical resource for clinicians to guide runners in functional rehabilitation and return to running following lower limb stress injury.

1Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA; 2Pauole Sport, Seattle, WA

Address for correspondence: Brian C. Liem, MD, Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, University of Washington, 325 Ninth Ave., Box 359612, Seattle, WA 98104; E-mail:

Copyright © 2013 by the American College of Sports Medicine.