ADVANCE for Physical Therapy & Rehab Medicine (www.advanceweb.com/pt October 1, 2012) recently published an article supporting Pilates for both running-related injuries and for ongoing conditioning to prevent future injury for runners of all discipline. The repetitive motion of running often leads to muscle imbalances extenuated by poor running technique, incorrect training, problems with footwear and running surfaces.
The most common running injuries include iliotibial band syndrome (outer upper leg pain or outside knee pain), patellofemoral dysfunction (knee pain), plantar fasciitis (foot pain), and shin splints.
Running is mostly a saggital plane motion (forward-backward) while the muscles that stabilize the spine and pelvis are supported in the transverse (rotation) and frontal (side to side) planes and are not specifically challenged when running. Research supports specific trunk stabilization, core strength, posture control, and alignment to optimize performance.
Pilates exercise requires appropriate alignment, breathing and movement precision. It is designed to simultaneously strengthen and lengthen muscles, stabilize the core and promote balance, symmetry and proportionately developed muscles ultimately addressing the runner’s muscle imbalances that lead to pain and dysfunction. Therefore Pilates is a “superb complement for any runner’s conditioning program.”
Here are several examples:
The above photo shows prone reformer lower trap strengthening and helps stabilize a runner’s upper back for arm swing while running as well as low back and glute strength.
The above two photos show prone hip ER incorporating core with hip strengthening; targeting transverse plane stability.
The above photo show the modified side plank with hip abduction picture targets frontal plane stability for runners.
Call Great Moves today at 719-477-6870 to start your Pilates mat/ball/Reformer program and have your running technique and footwear analyzed.