Many of the running injuries we see are when a patient has performed a sharp increase in activity (running), especially after a long period of rest.
A thorough assessment usually finds a strength deficit combined with less than optimal biomechanics.
In our treatment we provide rehabilitation exercises and cues to correct their biomechanics. But the big question from the patient remains….
‘When can I start running?’
My short answer is very soon. Factor in a day or two to let the injury settle then patients can start not long after.
Most of my patients start back with a Jog:Walk program.
Now depending on the severity of the injury, fitness of the patient and upcoming goals. We start with:
1 min jog: 1 min walk
There are a few reasons why this is a fantastic way of getting back into running:
- The walk interval gives your tissue a chance to ‘rest’. Reducing the constant load that continuous jogging can give.
- Allows shorter periods for you to focus on your new running technique. The walk in between allows you a chance to think about your cues while also getting a mental break from continuously concentrating about your new technique.
- It’s a good way to build your fitness base back up especially if you have had a long lay-off.
- It allows you more ‘time on your feet’, than you would just continuous running.
As pain and strength allow we increase the program to:
2 min jog: 1 min walk -> 3 min jog: 1 min walk and so on. This allows a small increase in load to the tissues, helping them slowly adapt to increasing efforts.
When you can run 4-5 minutes with little pain, it is usually safe to go back to continuous jogging.
Now some patients find it very difficult to go from a 40-60min+ jog to a much shorter session, but:
- I try and get them to think of it not like a replacement to their running session but like a ‘rehab exercise’ where they are concentrating on their new technique.
- That it is only for a relatively short period of time – until they are back fully running.
- And most of all that it is a lot better than not running at all.
As most runners know… ‘You can’t tell a runner that they are not allowed to run’.
A Jog:Walk program is a great way of returning from injury but it is also a good introduction to interval training which can greatly improve your fitness and more importantly your personal bests.
If you need some guidance or a running assessment please contact the clinic on 9882 2020 or firstname.lastname@example.org/csc