Running is a series of rhythmic, repeated movements in which 60% of the time your leg is in the air in swing phase. Not only that, our bodies need to be able to withstand 2.5-3.9x our body weight while we are on one leg. This means that you need to be able to balance successfully on one leg and have enough strength to withstand 2.5x your body weight during running! When your core, glutes, quads or calves are not strong enough to withstand this force, you may have injuries or incontinence. If your ankles or hips have stiffness, you cannot absorb shock properly and you may have injuries or incontinence. The graphic below shows the phases of the running cycle.
Our running assessment (based on research by Chris Johnson, MPT, ITCA and Jay Dicharry, MPT, SCS) measures the strength and flexibility that the body needs in each of these phases in order to successfully run and stay injury free. These tests challenge the runner through movements that mimic the demands of running. Successful completion of these tasks gives us confidence that the runner’s body can withstand the demands of running.
What if I can’t do some of the tests? Does that mean I shouldn’t run? No! But it does show you where you need more strength or mobility to improve your performance and prevent injuries.
So what do we look at?
1-posture and alignment
2-hip strength and stability
5-toe flexibility and coordination
So for all of you recreational and experienced runners or postpartum moms out there, if this looks like something you are interested in, contact me at Laura@RVAholisticpt.com and let’s get our run on!
Dr. Laura has taken advanced coursework in pelvic floor physical therapy, orthopedics and running analysis. She is a distance athlete, triathlete, marathoner and mother of 2.