A lot of my friends have begun running in the last year and they all have so much energy now. We all used to tend to lay around on the weekends and now they want to go out and run and do other things while I still want to lay on the couch. Now that I see this dramatic change, I want to start running too. But I am worried about hurting myself or having an injury. Can you help me with that?
That is a great question. And I think it’s a very valid concern for someone who is starting an exercise program for the first time or has had some type of injury in the past.
Here’s how we can help: One of the things that we love doing for new runners is an analysis of your running form. Sometimes it’s called a biomechanical gait analysis. What that means is that we watch you run, either in person on a treadmill or via a video that you send to us. From there we break that video down and look at many factors in your running mechanics. Those factors can give us lots of information on what injuries you might have a higher likelihood for, or where you might develop aches or pains.
Cool! What kinds of things do you look for in this analysis of how I run?
It’s really a head-to-toe analysis. Yet some of the major things that we are looking for are:
How do you land? How much shock goes up into your body? Does that give you a higher risk for compartment syndrome or a stress fracture?
How do your foot and ankle dissipate forces during your stride? Do they set you up for a higher risk of posterior tibialis issues, plantar fasciitis, Achilles, or ankle pain?
How much and how fast does your arch collapse? How does this relate to your potential for Achilles tendinitis, plantar fascia pain, and medial calf issues?
How much does your pelvis drop? How might that be contributing to your knee, ankle, and foot pain? This answer might surprise you as its very common.
How much energy do you waste in up and down motion as opposed to moving forward? How much faster and more efficient might you be if this was fixed?
Are you propelling yourself forward through your entire stride? Or are you only using half of your stride for power?
Awesome. What do you do with this information once you have it?
That is the fun part! This video analysis gives us some potential areas that might be weak or tight. We follow those potential areas up with some specific movements or exercises to test our hypothesis. That will give us further confirmation as to what the video might have picked up.
For example, if the video is suggesting that you might have a weak hip muscle and is making your knee hurt, then we will ask you to perform a movement that will ask that specific hip muscle contract and we can get a better idea if that muscle is ready for running. If it is testing weaker than it should, we can design a very specific exercise program for you that will fortify your muscles so that they are ready for the track, roads, trails, hills, and whatever else your new running journey takes you.
For more information on this biomechanical running analysis, contact us at Evolve Performance Running for more details. We would love to help you get started running with the most resilient body you can develop.