I have been using Fleet Feet Sports in Carrborro as resource for my physical therapy clients and for myself since moving to the area 3 years ago. So when I got the chance to perform injury screenings for their community of walkers and runners this past month I jumped at the chance. This was a great opportunity to provide consultations and recommendations regarding shoes and orthotics, exercises to improve running performance and managing injury trouble spots.
I wanted to share some of the lessons I learned by meeting and working with the screening participants:
1) AFTER AN INJURY to the foot, ankle or knee, the muscles that control the hips and pelvis during running will undoubtedly become weak. Sometimes, these muscles will get stronger again through running, but often they will require specific exercises to get them back into shape.
2) IF YOU ARE STARTING A NEW PROGRAM, ease into how often you perform the activity. For example, give your body 3-4 days of rest between running or walking session for the first 2-4 weeks of starting the new program. This will allow your body’s tissues to recover and adapt to the new demands placed on them. As you gain confidence in the activity 1-2 times per week and know that there are no injuries looming, add in another day to your program, allowing 2-3 days of rest.
3) PUSHING THROUGH PAIN IS A RED FLAG that your body needs management and help. Especially, if you feel the pain early in your training and it does not get better during the activity or gets worse. Often with this type of acuteness, there will be pain at night or during your daily activities in the home and community.
4) Lastly, IF YOU HAVE HAD PREVIOUS ORTHOPEADIC SURGERIES it is a wise idea to get a physical from a physical therapist to be sure that there are not any underlying weakness or biomechanical issues that may lead to a new or recurrent injury. Physical therapists are primary health care providers who can perform in depth musculoskeletal physical tests to determine your body’s “fitness” for a new training program.
If you are a runner and would like to receive a free runners screen, just give us a call at the clinic, 919-932-7266 and we will try to accommodate your request,