Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Runner's Pain


Many martial artists supplement their training routine with running.  And millions of non-martial artists run or jog to stay in shape. If running is part of your workout, please do it safely. Here are some things to watch out for if you experience pain during or after a run -

Back Pain or Fatigue

Why? - usually from leaning too far forward.  When leg muscles become tired, our normal tendency is to lean forward in order to compensate.

Solution - straighten your posture and shorten your stride.

Neck or Shoulder Pain

Why? - same as back pain: leaning too far forward.  Runners may also raise their shoulder too high, especially when trying to run faster.  This tenses the entire upper back structure, leading to pain and fatigue.

Solution - straighten your posture and relax while dropping your shoulders.

Tight or PainfulHamstrings

Why? - Usually from over-striding, especially during the beginning and the end of a run.  Also occurs when you put on a sudden burst of speed or when running downhill. May also occur when a runner kicks his/her leg up too high from out behind.

Solution - make sure, as in all forms of exercise, to warm up properly.  Allow your leg muscles to recover by breaking parts of your run up into short walks and stop briefly at points to stretch your muscles. Lower your kick out behind you.

Knee Pain or Weak Knees

Why? – Over-striding again. Your body weight crashes down on a leg that is too far ahead, stressing the knee.

Solution - legs should come down directly beneath you.

Painful Quads

Why? - Running too fast or too far shortens your stride due to tired calf muscles. To compensate, runners will sometimes lift their legs higher which results in painful quads. Also occurs when runners try to slow themselves with their quads when going down a steep or long slope.

Solution - reduce stride length and keep feet low to the ground.

Always warm up before a run by walking about and performing some gentle stretches.  Always cool down with a combination of walking, stretching and massaging. This helps restore the muscle to their normal state and function.

Now let's put on our runners and go out and enjoy the nice weather!

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