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safety tips for running in the dark

Safety Tips for Running in the Dark

by Danielle McIntyre, PT, DPT, CMPTLeave a Comment

Let’s chat about running safety. When you go out for a run, safety might not be the first thing on your mind. Unfortunately, running at night or in the dark can lead to more dangerous or vulnerable situations. Whether it’s your work schedule, the hot temperatures, or just your preference to run outdoors in the dark, these tips will ensure you enjoy your run and can do so safely.

1. Wear bright, reflective clothing and run against traffic

You never want to assume an approaching vehicle can see you. Wearing bright clothing will help you stand out against your darker surroundings and make you more visible. There are many other accessories you can purchase to help you be seen like headlamps or a flashing light accessory that attaches to your clothes or you wear as a bracelet. Running on the left side of the road will ensure you can see cars earlier and move out of the way if necessary.

2. Let someone know your plan

Giving someone details regarding where you are running at and how long you will be gone will ensure that you are back when expected and can help track you down easier if needed.

3. Carry a cell phone

I know a lot of runners prefer to run without a cell phone. Today, your smart watch can have your running route, favorite playlist and accurate GPS information all on your wrist without a bulky arm band or phone in your pocket. However, at night, having your phone with you means that help is only a quick call away if you were to get lost, roll your ankle or encounter an unsafe situation.

4. Ditch the headphones or only listen in one ear

Paying attention to your surroundings is always critical. Lower the volume, try listening in one ear or ditch the headphones altogether to ensure you can hear cars, bicycles or anyone approaching.

5. Run with a buddy

Strength in numbers! Be sure you’re following social distancing guidelines outlined in your state. My favorite running partner is my black lab, Kiya.

6. Watch for uneven surfaces

Running in your neighborhood, always be on the lookout for uneven surfaces, curbs and any branches or debris. A funny step could lead to an ankle sprain.

Running should always be fun and stress free. However, that is not always the case and safety should be your priority. Keeping these tips in mind on your next run will ensure you can enjoy your run and arrive home safely! If you’re looking to start up your outdoor running after a long time away from the activity, use these tips to help you transition.

If you experience any pain or have any concerns during a run, contact your local Athletico clinic to schedule a free assessment. Assessments can be accessed in-clinic or virtually from the comfort of your home through our Telehealth platform.

Request a Free Assessment

The Athletico blog is an educational resource written by Athletico employees. Athletico bloggers are licensed professionals who abide by the code of ethics outlined by their respective professional associations. The content published in blog posts represents the opinion of the individual author based on their expertise and experience. The content provided in this blog is for informational purposes only, does not constitute medical advice and should not be relied on for making personal health decisions.

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