Running out of steam? Tips to combat jogging joint pain
Does running and jogging cause you pain? Read on for expert tips
In our day and age, we seem to be completely out of touch with our bodies and their natural habitat.
Our Paleolithic ancestors, we have learnt, were Bipedal human beings. What this simply means is we moved on two feet, whether it was walking or running.
Today, many people try to jog and run with poor bodily mechanics. Due to fact the body is no longer moving effectively - recruiting the correct muscles - later on, much of the impact effects the joints and ligaments, causing us pain.
So here are 3 tips on how you can improve your walking, jogging and running techniques.
Tip One: Myofascial therapy for your quadriceps muscles (thighs)
Sitting for long periods of time can result in certain muscles in our body becoming overactive and shortened. These areas need releasing with the use of deep tissue therapy, which will help increase mobility in the tight muscles, prevent injury and joint pain.
Step 1: Lie facing down on a PVC pipe.
Try to keep the thigh you not rolling on out to the side.
Step 2: Bend your elbows at 90 degrees, they will be there for support throughout.
Be sure to get the full spectrum of the of the thigh muscle.
Step 3: Start at the very top of your hip and slowly work your way down the thigh to just above your knee.
Step 4: Hold on each tender point for 2-5 minutes, breathing into the area.
Be sure to get the full spectrum of the of the thigh muscle.
Be sure to NOT roll on the knee joint itself.
Step 5: Once you have completed one leg, switch to the other side.
Myofascial therapy work best when done before any exercise.
Tip Two: Practice your foot grounding with the staggered stance static hold
A pattern of how a person walks, jogs and run is known as their gait. This static exercise allows you to make the correct foot placement, helping you build an efficient gait pattern. It also facilitates the major muscles in the lower body required for running such as your butt, legs and core to activate correctly.
Step 1: Start with your legs a hip’s distance apart.
Step 2: Now place one foot behind you in a staggered stance.
Step 3: Keeping both feet pointing straight, lift the back heel up on the back foot.
Step 4: With your knees slightly bent, place 90% of the pressure through the heel on the front leg and 10% through the toes on the back leg.
Keep your spine neutral and extended and your chest lifted.
Keep your hips behind your shoulders.
Step 5: Posterially tilt the pelvis and draw your navel in.
The goal here is to try and get the muscles in the front foot activated whilst keeping your heel pressed down try to squeeze the muscles in the butt and back of the thigh.
Step 6: Once you feel a burn, switch legs and repeat.
It is important that you do NOT allow the knee on the front leg to extend past your ankles.
This exercise can be performed 2-3 sets on each leg.
Tip Three: Build a strong core with the Plank exercise
This exercise is very important because it links the Glutes (butt), which are your powerhouse muscles, and the core with each other. This helps stabilize the pelvic while walking, jogging or running.
Step 1: Lie down on your front on the floor, place your elbows in line with your shoulders, bent at 90 degrees.
Step 2: Keep your feet wider apart than your hips.
Step 3: Tuck your pelvis under, draw your navel in and breathe into your into your rib cage.
Step 4: Rest your elbows on the ground as you lift your upped body, so your upper body is resting on your elbows which are bent at 90 degrees.
Step 5: Keep your hips slightly above your shoulders while holding your plank.
It is good to use a mirror to view yourself from the side to check your hips are in the correct place.
You must not hunch your back in this exercise, keep it as straight as possible.
Step 6: Keep your shoulder blades retracted and keep your navel pulled in.
There is no set time limit for this exercise, simply rest and repeat when your back dips in and you can no longer hold the plank.
If you do not feel your core muscles activate during this exercise, or feel the burn in the lower back, it could be that the core is still weak.
A good trick for beginners is to squeeze your butt muscles to ensure that your Glutes and core work together.
After you have mastered performing the plank on your knees and can maintain straight back throughout, then you can advance to a plank with your knees off the floor, as illustrated in the image below.
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