Factors Leading To Running Injuries – Change

Does running regularly mean you will end up having to pay physios for life? No, not necessarily. Although, like with virtually any sport, even swimming if you swim often and aim high, you will suffer some injuries. How bad, how often and for how long, now these are variables that can be changed.

Change is one of the causes of sport related injuries. And when we talk about running injuries we refer to:

– foot injuries – including plantar fasciitis
– ankle injuries
– shin splints
– knee injuries
– hip injuries
– lower back pain

These are very common injuries and pains in runners who run regularly and push themselves to make progress.

Change is one of the elements that can cause there types of running injuries. Change in terms of:

– speed
– distance
– running frequency, but also
– different shoes (watch out minimalist/barefoot runners when transitioning to minimalist shoes), and different technique
– training type – i.e. from endurance training to interval training

No matter how much you try to progress fast, you are directed by your NERVOUS SYSTM. Until the nervous system adapts to the change, any attempt to push beyond it’s adaptation time frame can lead to injuries.

Thus, my advice on any changes you wish to make:
– make change slow
– have patience
– make the correct changes
– make the changes correct
– get a coach to direct you so you do things the right way, especially if you are a beginner

Need coaching? Email support@themtechnique.com or click here to book a free consultation.

Want to know when the next running technique workshop takes place? Leave your details below and you will receive the updates.

Something’s Wrong With Your Shoes

I keep picking on running shoes, and, when possible, my clients and I walk and train barefoot. We take off our running shoes and go barefoot for some really good reasons. These are just a few of them:

 

Sensory Perception

There is a network of nerves on the bottom of your feet which sent information to the brain about the ground underneath your feet: . This triggers reflexes that help you avoid injuries when you sense something sharp or uneven. The thick soles of your running shoes limit sensory perception, and limit the key reflexes your body is intelligently equipped with to avoid injury, whether skeletal or muscular.

 

Flat Foot

Flat foot essentially means the arch of the foot doesn’t develop properly or it collapses. This can lead to other injuries.

There are people who are genetically predisposed to getting flat feet, but in many, many cases the problem is caused my weak foot muscles. These muscles help create and maintain the shape of the arch. Like any other arch you see in construction, they support your weight as it bounces up and down.

Your running shoes have arch support and cushioning so your muscles work less. Like any other muscles, if the muscles in the arch of your foot are not trained they weaken.

So I ask you this: if weak muscles in the arch leads to flat feet, are shoes that make those muscles work less the best choice?

Stiff soles are there to make the foot muscles work less as well. The less the muscles work, the weaker they become.

 

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is that sharp pain you may have felt in the sole of your feet after a run or when you wake up in the morning.

The plantar fascia is a tendonlike sheet of tissue at the base of your foot. It works with he muscles in your arch. That sharp pain comes from inflammation of the plantar fascia.

If the arch muscles are weak then the plantar fascia has to work more, to compensate for those weak muscles. More stress on the plantar fascia eventually leads to inflammation.

Thus weak foot muscles contribute to plantar fasciitis as well. Padded shoes, created to help the foot work less, contribute to weak foot muscles. Weak foot muscles then need support, we give them support, they stay weak or get worse, and on, and on we go. A vicious circle.

One way I alleviate plantar fasciitis pain is by using a golf ball. Walking can also help the recovery process.

 

Uneven terrain

Among the things I love most in the outdoors is the uneven terrain. The flat, shiny gym or home floor does little to develop foot muscles. It does help but not as much as when you walk, run , crawl and balance on uneven terrain.

Uneven doesn’t mean holes in the ground. Your foot muscles will react to the slightest drop, even if it’s 1mm.

That is one of the many reasons why I choose the outdoors for myself and also for my clients.

 

Should you throw away your shoes?

There is no doubt that shoes protect us in many situations, such as when we step on a sharp object. They also protect us during the winter. There is nothing wrong in wearing shoes.

However, there is the downside of wearing shoes which has been the topic of this article. Thus, the solution is to balance it out. Wear shoes, wear minimalist shoes and go barefoot as well, indoors but more importantly outdoors where you have uneven terrain.

 

Now, I am not a podiatrist, but I do know this: strong and flexible feet are healthy feet. Strong, flexible and healthy fit make good foundations for a strong, flexible and healthy body. 

A great book to read is The Story Of The Human Body by Daniel Lieberman.

 

If you do need advice, or maybe have questions about minimalist shoes contact me.

How To Reduce The Risk Of Ankle Injury

Ankle injuries, sprains and strains, are very common regardless of whether you exercise, practice a sport or simply walk down the street. Has it ever happened to you?

There are several ways to treat ankle injuries at home as NHS suggests: protection, rest, ice, compression and elevation.

But how about we learn how they happen and how to keep your ankles “fit” and reduce the risk of sprains and strains.

The most common ways to reduce the risk is to wear the correct type of shoes for the activity and warm up properly before workout.

But how many times will you warm up before stepping on the side of the road or twist your ankle while wearing high heels? As if you planed to do it.

Ankle sprains and ankle strains often occur if you change direction or speed suddenly, fall or land awkwardly.

To ensure your muscles, ligaments and tendons are prepared for “the unexpected” you can do a number of simple things…..throughout the day, no need to take time out of your schedule:

  1. Stand on one leg, balance – to strengthen the ankle and foot stability muscles; you can do this while talking to your friend on the phone or watching tv (make sure you are aware of what is around you, in case you lose balance and fall; safety first)
  1. Ankle rotations – for ankle mobility; may seem too simple but done regularly while you sit on the tube it can make a difference…..if you actually do it; turn off your facebook on your phone and use your time on the tube instead of wasting it
  1. Full squats – squat all the way down without any weights; squats will strengthen stability muscles, mobilize your ankles and they do so much more for your body and health

 

Fine, I said you don’t have to take time out of your schedule but you have to for the squats. Or do you? How many time do you sit and stand during the day? Many times. Use that to:

  1. Place your feet hip width apart
  2. Toes facing forward
  3. Back straight – chest proud – looking forward
  4. Stand up as if you are standing up from a squat
  5. Sit down in a squat

Sure, it’s not a full squat but it still strengthen your stability muscles and mobilize your hips,

This is a fast explanation of a squat. If you are unsure message me and I will ensure you do it the right way so you don’t develop incorrect habits. When in doubt contact me.