Archive for run injury

Why Do So Many Runners Get Injured?

Capsule_Truth

Hey Everyone! Coach Al here. So, are you ready for an awful and shocking truth? 70% of all runners will be injured this year. 7 out of 10. That's nearly three fourths of all runners, including triathletes. 3/4ths! And for many of those folks, the injury they experience will be devastating and frustrating beyond words. The statistics are crazy and shocking, and also sad. It honestly doesn't have to be that way.

WHY do so many runners get injured? There are many reasons, but let's start with the simple fact that running is just plain HARD on your body. For example, have you ever stopped to think that when you run ONE mile, you do the equivalent of approximately 1500 one-leg-squat jumps? That's just ONE mile. Working against the forces of gravity and ground reaction, your body had better be resilient, strong and mobile enough to hold up as the miles add up. And most bodies aren't. Especially those just starting out hoping to use running to lose weight or get fit.

Through no fault of your own, triathletes and runners have not been told the full story of what it takes to stay healthy and become faster too. The marketing machine surrounding shoe sales and races (get your latest cool colors or latch onto the latest fad: minimalist anyone?) diverts the average runner's attention. Add that together with uninformed trainers and coaches who don't know any better, and what you have is what you have.

So what's the real story? And most importantly, what can YOU do about it?

In a nutshell, movement quality is the story, that's what.  (Keep reading, trust me, you need to know this!)

How your body moves and functions is the alpha and the omega of your ultimate athletic potential. Movement quality is the difference between an athlete who rocks it year after year, able to perform at peak potential vs. an athlete stuck in plateaus of sub-par performance or, worse, deals with vicious cycles of injury.

As gait analysis experts, we can use our knowledge of this incredibly powerful tool to provide a clear way to explain what you need to know, what you need to examine, and why you need to fix your imbalances.

Most people think gait analysis is:

a) only about how you walk or run

b) only about your feet and your shoes

c) something you get done in a running shoe store

Many think gait analysis is all about--and ONLY about--someone looking at you as you walk or run while evaluating your feet and your shoes.

BeforeAndAfter_Text

A sample BEFORE / AFTER video analysis taken in our Pursuit Athletic Performance "Fast" Lab

How many of you have done the following? A clerk in your local running store watches you jog, and suggests a pair of shoes that are more stable, or more neutral, or more cushioned, or are the type that "forces" you to land midfoot. Voila! Your biomechanical problems are solved. This is what most people know--and have come to accept--as gait analysis.

We are here to tell you that a shoe store gait analysis is about as far from the real deal as you can get. In fact, true gait analysis is not a generic exercise, but is a scientifically-based and technically precise process. It is highly individualized, and reveals much about how you will hold up to training and, ultimately, perform.

When conducting a gait analysis, the feet are only one small piece of your biomechanical puzzle.

What happens at the feet is merely a part of a holistic, whole body, integrated MOVEMENT pattern. Running, like most other whole body activities (such as swimming or playing many field sports), is essentially a unique way of moving. When we analyze a client statically, dynamically, and then running on the treadmill during a gait analysis, it serves to provide a unique, personal movement "map." That "map" reveals the programming of everything happening within the body--from kinesthetic awareness and habit, to individual levels of mobility, stability, flexibility, and functional strength. The analysis of all of these different elements taken together is what creates a complete picture of a person's gait.

In essence, what we do isn't "gait" analysis at all, it is true "movement" analysis. Gait analysis uncovers precisely how YOUR body is moving.

Every activity, even standing still, represents a unique movement pattern. That pattern is bred from your habits and lifestyle, as well as your body's mobility, stability, flexibility and strength. Every action you take--running stride, pedal stroke, swim stroke, etc.--represents a unique movement pattern. If your movement patterns include compensations (and they likely do), we can pinpoint the areas in the body where these losses of efficiency, or compensation, originate.

Where athletes get into trouble is when major compensation, which often leads to true dysfunction, continues for extended periods of time.

What typically happens is this....

Compensations in the body lead to imbalances and instability around joints. The larger prime movers (hamstrings, glutes, quads, etc.) are often forced to help create stability or on the flip side, become less active, and end up contributing less than their fair share of the work in moving us around.

The smaller/tiny stabilizers are forced to step in (compensate) and do the work of the larger, more powerful prime movers. The stabilizers are taxed day in and day out, mile after mile. Over time they end up, in a word, fried. Shredded. The wear and tear on the stabilizers greatly compromises recovery and your ability to train consistently.

In short, this scenario is an injury waiting to happen. We see it over and over again.

Discovering the inefficiencies and compensation unique to YOU is the power of what true gait analysis can reveal. Once uncovered, you can then begin to address inefficient and costly "energy leaks" that rob you of power and free speed (*the speed you get without having to pay a "price" to get it!).

We can't say it enough--improper, unbalanced movement limits your ultimate potential and puts you at an exponentially-increased risk of injury.

In short, gait analysis is about YOU, and your personal and very unique way of moving. Unless the underlying causes of your dysfunctional movement patterns are addressed, your patterns won't change, and, thus, the risk of injury won't improve. Gait analysis is about looking at your entire body as a holistic organism--a single amazing unit.

It goes far beyond an untrained eye watching you jog in a pair of sneakers.

So what to do?

First, to learn more about what you can do NOW to avoid or recover from injury, check out our series on how to SOLVE the three most common running injuries NOW! 

Want to learn more about our state-of-the-art Virtual Gait Analysis , to see if it might be right for you? Click here. You won't be disappointed, that's for sure.

If you have any questions at all on the above, hit us up on Facebook or drop us an email at: info@pursuitathleticperformance.com

All the best!

~Coach Al

 

003: Rebuilding the Injured Athlete (Podcast)

pursuit athletic performance podcastHi Everyone!

In this podcast, Coach Al Lyman and Dr. Kurt Strecker discuss Reductionist vs. Holistic Approaches to Treatment of An Injured Athlete. That's quite a mouthful, isn't it? It simply means this....

Coach and Kurt discuss treatment of injuries from a holistic, complete body point of view. They explain why treating the site of pain doesn’t usually correct the problem, and why treating the whole person is the key to preventing relapse.

Says Dr. Strecker, "Non-contact or repetitive use injuries are common in athletes. All too frequently, athletes get stuck in a cycle of recurrent injury and frustration despite having sought treatment. The body is an integrated unit and functions as such. Good treatment, rehabilitation and training must incorporate the whole body and not just the injured tissue or the risk of re-injury will be great."

If you're hurt or always battling some type of nagging injury, you need to listen.

Be GREAT!

Coach Al and Kurt

 

We hope you enjoy our podcasts and find them useful for your training and racing. Any questions? Hit us up in the comments, or on Facebook. Let us know of any topics you would like us to cover too.

NOTE! If you review our podcast on iTunes you could win TWO MONTHS FREE on our training team! Click here for details, register below.

Like this podcast? Know someone who might need it? Click here for a ready-made quick tweet.

Right click to download .mp3

Click here to Subscribe via RSS (non-iTunes feed)

Learn How You Move Series: Why Running Injuries Are Rampant

Learn How You Move: Why Running Injuries Are Rampant

pursuit athletic performanceToday we begin a multi-part series on why movement quality and gait matter to you as a runner and triathlete. (Actually, this matters in ALL sports and in daily life but that is to be delved in another day.)

To say gait and movement quality "matters" is an understatement. Through no fault of your own, triathletes and runners have not been told the full story of what it takes to become strong, fast, and healthy. Most coaches know little if anything about the essential, fundamental importance of how your body moves in sport. The marketing machine that is triathlon and run training ignores it altogether. How else do you explain rampant running injuries with 70% of all runners are injured EVERY YEAR. 70%! It doesn't have to be that way.

How your body moves and functions is the alpha and the omega of your athletic potential. Movement quality is the difference between an athlete who rocks it year after year, able to perform at peak potential vs. an athlete stuck in plateaus of sub-par performance or, worse, deals with vicious cycles of injury.

As gait analysis experts, we can use our knowledge of this incredibly powerful tool to provide a clear way to explain what you need to know, what you need to examine, and why you need to fix your imbalances.

Most people think gait analysis is:

a) only about how you walk or run

b) only about your feet and your shoes

c) something you get done in a running shoe store

Many think gait analysis is all about--and ONLY about--someone looking at you as you walk or run while evaluating your feet and your shoes.

How many of you have done the following? A clerk in your local running store watches you jog, and suggests a pair of shoes that are more stable, or more neutral, or more cushioned, or are the type that "forces" you to land midfoot. Voila! Your biomechanical problems are solved. This is what most people know--and have come to accept--as gait analysis.

We are here to tell you that a shoe store gait analysis is about as far from the real deal as you can get. In fact, true gait analysis is not a generic exercise, but is a scientifically-based and technically precise process. It is highly individualized, and reveals much about how you will hold up to training and, ultimately, perform.

When conducting a gait analysis, the feet are only one small piece of your biomechanical puzzle.

What happens at the feet is merely a part of a holistic, whole body, integrated MOVEMENT pattern. Running, like most other whole body activities (such as swimming or playing many field sports), is essentially a unique way of moving. When we analyze a client statically, dynamically, and then running on the treadmill during a gait analysis, it serves to provide a unique, personal movement "map." That "map" reveals the programming of everything happening within the body--from kinestetic awareness and habit, to individual levels of mobility, stability, flexibility, and functional strength. The analysis of all these different elements taken together is what creates a complete picture of a person's gait.

In essence, what we do isn't "gait" analysis at all, it is true "movement" analysis. Gait analysis uncovers precisely how YOUR body is moving.

Every activity, even standing still, represents a unique movement pattern. That pattern is bred from your habits and lifestyle, as well as your body's mobility, stability, flexibility and strength. Every action you take--running stride, pedal stroke, swim stroke, etc.--represents a unique movement pattern. If your movement patterns include compensations (and they likely do), we can pinpoint the areas in the body where these losses of efficiency, or compensation, originate.

Where athletes get into trouble is when major compensation, which often leads to true dysfunction, continues for extended periods of time.

What typically happens is this....

Compensations in the body lead to imbalance around the joints. The larger prime movers (hamstrings, glutes, quads, etc.) become less active, and end up contributing less than their fair share of the work in moving us around.

The smaller/tiny stabilizing muscles are forced to step in (compensate) and do the work of the larger, more powerful prime movers. The stabilizers are taxed day in and day out, mile after mile. Over time they end up, in a word, fried. Shredded. The wear and tear on the stabilizers greatly compromises recovery and your ability to train consistently.

In short, this scenario is an injury waiting to happen. We see it over and over again.

Discovering the inefficiencies and compensation unique to YOU is the power of what true gait analysis can reveal. Once uncovered, you can then begin to address inefficient and costly "energy leaks" that rob you of power and free speed.

We can't say it enough--improper, unbalanced movement limits your ultimate potential and puts you at an exponentially-increased risk of injury.

In short, gait analysis is about YOU, and your personal and very unique way of moving. Unless the underlying causes of your dysfunctional movement patterns are addressed, your patterns won't change, and, thus, the risk of injury won't improve. Gait analysis is about looking at your entire body as a holistic organism--a single amazing unit.

It goes far beyond an untrained eye watching you jog in a pair of sneakers.

Other posts in this series are:

Movement Quality and Improving Athletic Performance
Have One and You're Done
"Just Train More"

 

This Running Advice Makes Us See Red!

run, running, run injury, pursuit athletic performance, stop running through pain

We see red when athletes are encouraged to run through pain. The original message in the image above seems to present running through pain as a badge of honor, a measure of toughness and nerve. We don't see it that way AT ALL.

Of course, there is the righteous pain of hard efforts, but that's not what we're talking about here. We see athletes every day who have taken the "run through pain" message to heart, and act on it literally. They carry on through torn ligaments and tendons, sprains and stress fractures, all in the name of competing in that Ironman, or running that marathon.

We have to ask....

  • Do you honestly think that running through pain will get you to your goals?
  • Do you honestly think you are training at your FULL POTENTIAL when you are IN PAIN?
  • Do you really think it is OK to do that?

If you do, we won't be around to mop up the disappointment as you compromise your training, race slower, and, eventually, are forced to quit altogether. That's the nightmare scenario coming your way if you stubbornly train when you are hurt.

The paradox is this.... Running through pain is NOT TOUGH. It's stupid. The athletes who are really tough take the long view and shut it down if they have to. They learn what it takes to create a body that is durable, stable, and far more injury resistant. Then they do the hard work. If it means time away from running in order to return to the sport they love fixed, stronger, and faster than ever, then so be it.

That's how the TRULY TOUGH reach their goals--not by hobbling through training run after training run on Advil with knees strapped, braced, and wrapped. We can put point you to any number of our athletes--tough men and women--who do the work, learn how to train smart, and are now out there killing it--going fast, getting faster, and recovering to do it all over again, race after race, season after season.

Are you tough enough to do the same?

Here's a riff on a popular TV ad--"Morons run in pain. Don't be a moron." Might sound harsh, but sometimes the truth hurts.

###

Get our FREE 29-page ebook, Unleash Your Potential 101! Like us on Facebook and download!
Unleash Your Potential 101, Pursuit Athletic PerformanceNot on Facebook? No problem! Get your download and register to win here!