At partial load and overload conditions, Francis turbines are subjected to hydraulic instabilities that can potentially result in high dynamic solicitations of the turbine components and significantly reduce their lifetime. This study presents both experimental data and numerical simulations that were used as complementary approaches to study these dynamic solicitations. Measurements performed on a reduced scale physical model, including a special runner instrumented with on-board strain gauges and pressure sensors, were used to investigate the dynamic phenomena experienced by the runner. They were also taken as reference to validate the numerical simulation results. After validation, advantage was taken from the numerical simulations to highlight the mechanical response of the structure to the unsteady hydraulic phenomena, as well as their impact on the fatigue damage of the runner.