Remedies for Joint Pain From Running

Although the sport can be mentally soothing and emotionally relaxing, running is quite physically demanding on the body. With each foot strike, your ankles, knees and hips endure a significant force of impact. As a result, many runners experience aches and pains in these joints. Fortunately, various joint pain remedies can often relieve this negative side effect of running 2.

Is This an Emergency?

If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.

Cold Therapy

When joint pain first arises, it often feels like an intense burning in the affected areas. Use cold therapy to soothe this burning pain and reduce inflammation around the area. When something cold is placed against the skin, it causes the blood vessels to shrink. As a result, less blood and fluids flow into the area. Since these fluids are ultimately responsible for inflammation, applying cold should effectively prevent and/or reduce inflammation significantly. Generally, cold therapy is used soon after joint pain occurs, while heat therapy is used as a follow-up treatment. Cold therapy options include ice packs, cold packs or cold compresses.

Heat Therapy

When your joints are aching and sore, use heat therapy to soothe away the pain. Heat is more than just a pain reliever. When heat is applied to the skin, it causes the blood vessels to widen. As a result, more blood flows in and out of the area and the overall circulation improves. This effect is beneficial because it allows harmful toxins to be carried away from the joint. Heat also reduces joint stiffness and increases the joint’s range of motion, making physical activity, such as running, significantly easier. Heat therapy might include:

  • the use of electric blankets
  • heating pads
  • warm baths
  • hot towels
  • hot tubs
  • paraffin wax


Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or acetaminophen (Tylenol) can be used to effectively to relieve joint pain from running. NSAIDs include aspirin, inuprofen and naproxen. Once consumed, acetaminophen works by blocking the pain receptors in the brain, while NSAIDs prevent the transmission of pain impulses from one nerve to another. Both medications are effective pain relievers, but only NSAIDs can decrease inflammation. Taking either acetaminophen or NSAIDs intermittently is generally quite safe. Long-term use, however, can cause severe side effects. For this reason, it is beneficial to contact your physician if you plan to take these medications for longer than a few days or if you are currently taking any other medications.

Natural Remedies

While some people rely on pharmaceuticals to relieve pain, others rely on natural remedies 2. Although these remedies are generally not medically tested, they do provide pain relief for some people 2. According to, the following home remedies can relieve joint pain from running: drinking 1 tsp 2. of turmeric in hot milk, consuming 15 grams of bathu juice every day, rubbing the painful joint with hot vinegar or olive oil, and eating plenty of bananas.