Can I go running with a catheter?

If you’ve been an avid runner all your life and suddenly find yourself having an indwelling catheter, you might ask yourself if you can still go for your daily jog. And the short answer to this is: Yes, you absolutely can! There are just a few things that you might have to be a little more cautious about now that you’re living the catheter life.

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Don't over do it

Especially in the beginning, when you’re still getting used to your indwelling catheter and everything that comes with it, it’s a good idea to take it slow and steady. You might find going for a run a bit difficult at the start, especially if you’re suffering from bladder spasms too. So, rather than running your usual half-marathon, try going for a brisk walk around the block or a super gentle jog. Try a few things and see what works best for you!


Proper fixation is everything

Once you’re feeling more comfortable with your catheter and you feel ready to run again, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t or couldn’t do so. It’s just super important that you try to avoid any tugging as this can cause quite a bit of discomfort and can even lead to injuries. How do you avoid it? Easy, by using fixation devices to make sure everything is kept in place.


Leg bag sleeves

Leg bag sleeves are designed to hold your leg bag in place – either on your calf or on your thigh. Whatever you prefer! And it doesn’t matter what type of catheter you have either; a leg bag sleeve is a great fixation device for suprapubic catheters, urethral catheters, and you can even use it if you’re wearing a urinary sheath.


Leg bag straps

If a leg bag sleeve isn’t quite what you’re looking for, you can always give some leg bag straps a try. They are another one of the many fixation devices out there that will ensure that your bag stays in place as it fills up. With these leg bag straps, you have the choice whether you want to position the bag on your thigh, just above your knee, or your shin. Whatever is most comfortable for you.


Catheter straps

You can use a catheter strap to either support your indwelling urinary catheter or the tubing of your leg bag – whatever you think needs more support. And it doesn’t matter whether you’re living with a urethral or suprapubic catheter either, as they can be worn with both.


Catheter clips

If you want to secure your indwelling urinary catheter in place, you can use a catheter clip. This is a device that will help you to position your catheter in a way that’s most comfortable for you.


How about a catheter valve?

If your catheter doesn’t have to drain permanently and your bladder has a certain capacity, you might be able to use a catheter valve instead of a leg bag for your daily run. As the name suggests, it’s a little valve that gets attached to the end of your catheter. This will cause your bladder to fill up rather than urine draining into a bag. However, catheter valves aren’t suitable for everybody so it’s important that you talk to your district nurse or doctor before attempting to use one.