Safe Running Practices

 

With the potential of more time in your day the opportunity to get outside and go for a run may be tempting, to keep you active and help keep the boredom at bay. So, with many of us looking for ways to make the time pass by keeping active now is a great time to increase our knowledge around safe running practices to help keep us active without the injuries.

Important points to keep in mind when venturing out for your run:

Good Shoes:

While the type of equipment needed to be a runner is relatively limited, this is a great place to start especially if you are just starting out on your running journey. Whether your workout involves running, walking, sports or gym equipment, a shoe is a must. Good shoes are those that provide good shock absorption, cushioning and structured support and overall must be comfortable for you – COMFORT IS KING!

Form:

Don’t over stride, keep your leading leg as close to under your hips as possible. With a shorter and faster stride, you can help reduce the stress associated with the impact from longer strides and become more efficient in your running. When looking into specifics around strides it can be said that a cadence (this is the number of times your feet hit the ground) between 170-180 steps per minute could correlate with more ideal running form, with an increase in cadence found to reduce the loading through the hip and knee joints. This is easily measurable with free aps on your phone or simply counting foot landings in 15 seconds and multiplying by 4. Everyone has their own natural cadence but if you are having issues or are unsure about yours and want more information let us know – janelle@buretaphysio.co.nz.

 

Ensure you are maintaining good relaxed posture through your upper body. Your shoulders should be relaxed, loose, and low, not high and tight. Your head is heavy, and where it’s positioned will dictate how hard your neck and back muscles will have to work to support it, therefore it is important to keep your eyes focused on the track ahead.

 

Strength….

As a runner it is important to mix up those km’s by incorporating alternative training styles, in particular strength training. Although this may not be your method of choice for training the benefits this will have on your overall performance and injury risk will surely get you interested.

To start with we have the glutes… a.k.a buns of steel! Strong glutes = more powerful stride, running itself has minimal activation of your glutes so alternate forms of strength training is an important way to build your glutes. This aids in stabilisation of your pelvis, minimises the compensation of other muscles and helps reduce your risk of injury. Other areas of focus to aid in injury prevention and to enhance performance are everything from your core to your big toe.

 

Load

This is individual to everyone whether you are a veteran marathon runner or just starting out.  We all need to be conscious of our running load, as up to 80% of running injuries are related to tissue overload. This is due to rapid changes in training load, whether this be terrain based, distance or frequency. Therefore, showing the importance of load management in your training, through focusing on consistency and only increasing your running mileage when your ready and comfortable (and pain free!). If you are new to running, ensure you start with walking and walk/runs to help recondition your body to prepare for the higher demands of running and ideally start with alternate days only.

Running and Covid19….

No virus can stop a runner from running…. This being said we must all be adherent to sticking within our bubbles, only running within a close proximity to your home and ensuring you keep your distance from the other people out and about in your area. With the current uncertainty and changes to our daily routines it is an important time to remember to keep active through incorporating 30-60 minutes of varied exercise into our daily lives and looking out for one another.

And remember a healthy runner beats an injured runner every time.

 

If you want any more information on above or how we can help you achieve your running goals give us a call on 5761860 or email me on janelle@buretaphysio.co.nz.

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