Runners are always at the risk of injuries because sports involve high stress on joints and tissues. The risks increases if the runner has tight soft tissues, poor posture, stiff muscles or joints or weakness. Both competitive and recreational runners are prone to injuries and may require physical therapy.
Physical therapy is beneficial in improving the running efficiency and finding out the reasons that can impact the injuries while running.
The Injuries That May Occur Are
- Knee, hip or ankle injuries
- Iliotibial band injuries
- Back pain
- Stress injuries
- Plantar fasciitis
- Shin splints
- Tendinitis at the lower extremity
Physical therapists customize exercises to help you in rehabilitation and also monitor your running to guide you. They will improve your techniques and skills which will reduce the risk of injuries.
The Running Analysis Program Includes
- Phase1: Screening of Mobility and Functional movement
- Phase2: Video Analysis
- Phase3: Exercises to be performed at home
Some runners may continue to undertake the Running Analysis Program to improve their gait and efficiency. Others wish to continue exercises at their home under the guidance of the physical therapists. The analysis program also includes manual therapy, the techniques which are used in the therapy are Hawk grips therapy, Soft tissue mobilization and joint mobilization. All these techniques help in improving the runners’ mobility and eliminating the errors.
Phase 1: The screening of mobility and functional movements is done using a tool called Functional Movement Screen (FMS). Functional Movement Screen identifies the asymmetries that result in the deficiencies of functional movement. The imbalances in runners’ mobility and stability are often identified during the seven patterns of movement. These patterns help in observing the performance of a runner with respect to mobility and stability. After identifying the deficiencies, with the help of FMS, customized exercises are designed to correct imbalances and improve movement patterns.
Phase 2: In the Video Analysis, multiple video cameras are functioning to capture the gait of a runner. These cameras will slow down the movements up to 60 frames per second. With the help of these Video cameras, the physical therapist and the runner will be able to identify incorrect movements and deviations from the actual running posture.
Phase 3: This phase involves the exercises which are recommended by the therapist and to be performed at home. The set of exercises will help the runner to continue practicing healthy and efficient running techniques.
Benefits Of Running Analysis Program
- Improved postures
- Increased strength and flexibility
- Efficient running
- Improved mobility and stability
- Improved walking or running gait
- Reduced risk of injuries
- Quick rehabilitation
- Excellence in performance
- Better skills and techniques
Every runner suffers from different kinds of injuries and practices different techniques to enhance his performance. Depending on the runners’ condition, goals and injuries; physical therapists will design a Running Analysis Program. As it is a personalized program, the techniques used are goal-oriented, and mainly focuses on the overall improvement of the runner. Hence this program is recommended and is proved to be very effective.