Category Archives: Sports and Fitness

In your sixties?

Sixties
In your 60s, wear and tear on your joints may become more apparent. Studies show one in three people over 60 suffer a fall each year, and, muscle weakness and impaired balance are factors.
Challenge: Chair testPicture1346
Sit comfortably on a dining room chair, your feet firmly on the ground. Set a stopwatch, or use the secondhand on your watch, and simply stand without using your hands or arms for support, then sit again gently as many times as you can in 30 seconds. Healthy women in their 60s should be able to achieve at least 12 and men 14.
If you find this easy, progress to a softer, lower easy-chair which demands greater strength and balance to get up from and down without support, and see how many times you can get up and down out of the chair in 30 seconds. The targets are the same as above.

BALANCE TEST


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Stand tall on two feet, then raise the foot of the leg you consider to be your weakest. Balance on the other, keeping your eyes open and your arms relaxed at your sides. If you can balance for at least 22 seconds, you have the equilibrium of a 20-year-old; 15 seconds, that of a 30-year-old; 7.2 seconds, that of a 40-year-old; 3.7 seconds, that of a 50-year-old; and 2.5 seconds, that of a 60-year-old.
Adapting a workout routine for the 60s may mean curtailing aerobic exercise that jars and stresses the joints.
Your exercise aim: Adapting a workout routine for the 60s may mean curtailing aerobic exercise that jars and stresses the joints. So replace long runs with shorter jogging stints, cycling or power-walking and swimming. Strength training is still important, as are stretching and balance. If you are new to exercise ask at your local health centre about age-specific classes; aquarobics is an excellent gentle workout.
Aim to practise the test once every day and watch your score improve. Being able to perform regular squats like this – i.e. rising up and down from a chair without using your hands – keeps the muscles of the thighs and buttocks strong and is the key to maintaining independence in older age.
“Lose this ability, and you won’t be able to get on and off the loo by yourself,”
“If you are a keen gardener, don’t underestimate how fantastic the activity is for the strength of your arms, legs and overall stamina.”

Running Shoes – the various types and their differences.

The world of running shoes has undergone a major revolution over the past decade. As a result, the running shoe market provides an overwhelming range of options, with barefoot shoes at one end of the spectrum and the relatively new maximalist shoe at the other. With so many options in the ever-growing shoe market, the right shoe choice is not always clear cut. But if your shoes aren’t giving you any problems you are probably better sticking with what you have. If you run different distances, speeds and terrains  it is recommended that you have at least two pairs of shoes. More supportive shoes for longer runs where you will become fatigued and your running form will drop off; more minimalist shoes for faster runs; an all-terrain shoe with some grip and support for runs covering trail, road and gravel; and an aggressive-soled, minimalist shoe for trails with mud, water and rocks.

BAREFOOT SHOES

At the extreme end of the minimalist shoe spectrum are barefoot shoes. Designed to replicate barefoot running, barefoot shoes are flat, that is low pitched, but have no padding in the midsole. The theory behind running barefoot,  is that it gives a better feel for the ground so runners can more actively absorb the impact shock. The “shoe” element is essentially just to protect the foot from sharp objects. Vibram’s Five Fingers pictured below are an example of barefoot shoes.

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Most, if not all, runners would benefit from barefoot running as part of their training. Wearing barefoot shoes allows for increased proprioceptive input, which helps with force attenuation and foot strike angle, and they help runners modify the amount of impact they apply to the ground. They are not advised for runners who have marked peripheral sensory loss of the sole because the limited enclosure of the foot requires sensation for thermal and mechanical protection.

Downsides

Greater impact forces, combined with a forefoot strike pattern in barefoot shoes can put the metatarsal bones at risk of injury. A forefoot strike pattern will typically put more stretch and eccentric load on the plantar fascia and calf-Achilles complex during loading, which can lead to Achilles and plantar tendinopathies. Barefoot shoes don’t keep your feet dry in wet weather and runners can more easily break their toes.

MINIMALIST SHOES

Minimalist running shoes are generally lighter in weight than traditional shoes, have a minimal amount of padding in the midsole and are generally flat, that is low pitched.Picture137 Minimalist shoes suit runners who already have good running mechanics, but they can also help runners who want to improve poor technique such as over striding because they provide some shock absorption. Runners who are overweight should be advised against changing to minimalist shoes as they take away the extra shock absorption of traditional shoes is potentially leading these runners down a path of problems.  Minimalist shoes have a light, flexible and uninterrupted sole, and a varied amount of heel rise and differential leading to improved proprioception. This type of shoe is generally good for trail running. Transitioning to a minimalist shoe takes time – sometimes months.  There is a relatively high incidence of injuries in the gastrocnemius/soleus/ Achilles tendon complex and metatarsal heads of runners making this transition. It’s all about preparation, technique and patience. During the transition period, runners should  alternate between their traditional and minimalist shoes, starting with short runs in their new shoes. It is easy to overdo it. There is always the risk that the lighter shoe feels awesome and you head out for a long run on the first day and you can’t walk for the next two weeks.

Downsides .

Runners in minimalist shoes are susceptible to the same injuries as barefoot shoes but with a reduced risk. It is difficult for runners to improve their form in a minimalist shoe, as they don’t have the added advantage of improved proprioception that accompanies barefoot shoes, but they also don’t have the protective cushioning of a traditional shoe.

TRADITIONAL SHOES

Traditional shoes are conventional running shoes that have been on the market since the 1970s. They have a degree of pitch to them – the back of the shoe is higher than the front – and some padding, that is, the shoe is thicker in the midsole.

Picture136Who should wear them? Habitual heel strikers should wear these shoes.. People who are physically unfit and are looking to run or walk to improve their health and have poor core, hip and foot stability will benefit from the extra support of these shoes when they first start ou. Road ultramarathon runners may want to have a pair as the added support is valuable when fatigue sets in. Runners with chronic but managed Achilles tendinopathy who have used traditional shoes for many years to stay in these shoes to avoid the risk of a flare-up

Downsides

Runners with a tendency to heavily heel strike and over stride should avoid traditional shoes, work toward changing their running form with barefoot running drills and then use a more minimalist shoe. If using traditional shoes, they should be replaced regularly to prevent the risk of tibial stress. As a general rule, they have a maximum running mileage of around 1,000km to 1,500kms.

MAXIMALIST SHOES

Maximalist shoes are a recent addition to the mainstream market. These have a low pitch like the minimalist and barefoot shoes but a larger amount of low density padding. The concept takes some of the benefits of minimalist and traditional shoes, and packages them together: Like minimalist shoes they have a very low or zero pitch, promoting good running mechanics, but instead of having minimal cushioning, they have a lot.

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Who should wear them? These shoes are good options for those that are doing big training miles. They can also help runners who have been suffering ongoing foot problems, such as plantar tendinopathy or metatarsal head stress fractures.

Downsides

The downside of the mid-sole padding is that the shoes break down a lot quicker than traditional running shoes – at about 500km. Also they put ankles at high risk of injury because of the height of the sole.

Knee Strength

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It is well documented that the strength of the muscles around the knee and hip are important factors in the treatment and rehabilitation of the knee. If you have a sore knee you usually find that the muscles around that knee are weaker than the other side – presuming that there is nothing wrong with the other knee.

You can test the relative strength of the muscles surrounding your knee yourself by

  • Doing 15 repetitions of knee extensions, and hamstring curls in the gym using the same weight on each leg. Firstly with the painful knee and then with the good knee and see if there is a difference.
  • You can do the same with the leg press but you will be measuring the difference of the combined buttock and quadriceps strength. Research shows that buttock strength is an important factor in knee rehabilitation.
  • If you don’t go to the gym you can check out the relative strength by the number of step downs or step ups you can do on one leg compared to the other. Or you could measure the thigh circumference on one leg compared to the other. The thigh of the stronger leg will usually have a bigger circumference.

There are specific exercise regimes you need to do to rectify this imbalance. See you local physiotherapist for help with this.

STAND UP PADDLE BOARDING AND LOW BACK PAIN

The Lower Back
Low back pain is an extremely common symptom in the general population and effects 85% of us at some stage in life. The majority of back pain is caused by repeated strains associated with bending forwards. When you think of the technique used in SUP boarding it’s easy to see that there is a risk of doing some damage.
You only get one back, continuously straining it is likely to cause structural problems that will catch up with you in later life. So even if you’ve never had back trouble you should consider trying to keep your back as healthy as possible. As the sport becomes increasingly popular, I am concerned that people who paddled for years will start developing back problems later in life. This all sounds quite worrying doesn’t it? Well don’t panic, the good news is that there are things you can do to help prevent this from happening, and keep you paddling into old age.
Basic anatomy
The spine is made up of individual vertebrae which each produce a small amount movement. In the lower back (the lumbar region) there is a natural curve, which is known as a lordosis . This is particularly relevant when it comes to potential stresses and strains that go through this part of your back when paddling i.e. when reaching to place your paddle in the water you need to keep the hollow (lordosis) in your back.
Each individual lumbar vertebra allows a small amount of flexion (forward bending). But this region isn’t really designed to do this job excessively. Problems begin to arise when bending forwards from the lumbar spine becomes excessive and puts a strain on the soft tissue structures that maintain the natural curve (lordosis). You need to teach your back and hip muscles to hold a slight curve in your lower back and to do some of the bending at the hip.
How does this relate to SUP?
The natural design of human biomechanics allows us to bend forwards. SUP technique requires an element of bending forwards to produce the maximum power delivery though the paddle itself.
The key to reducing lower back injuries caused by SUP is pelvic tilt. If forward bending is done while maintaining the natural curve in your lower back then the strain on your lower back will be minimal and less likely for injuries to occur – see picture on the right. If pelvic control is poor and the pelvis is tilted backwards, the hinge point comes from the lumbar spine rather than the hip, which leads to injuries – see picture on the left.

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Correct
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The blue line shows the tilt of the pelvis. If the pelvis tilts forwards (in the right hand picture) the hips flex as well as the lower back, the natural lumbar curve is maintained and there is less stress on the lower back.

How can you reduce the risk of getting lower back injuries?
1. Have a think about your posture whilst paddling. Can you maintain a neutral lumbar spine position? Take your paddle and hold it against your back. Try and keep 3 points of contact on the paddle whilst bending forwards.
– At the sacrum – the boney bit at the base of your spine.
– The mid-thoracic spine – between your shoulder blades.
– The back of your head.

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Bend forwards with the paddle and keep all three points in contact with the paddle (Pelvis tilts forwards and bend at the hips).

2. Work on strengthening off the water… A lot of people think that SUP boarders develop “good core stability” and therefore strong around the lumbar spine. In some ways this may be true, but it’s dependent on you maintaining the correct posture and technique. Paddling with the correct posture will help you develop the correct movement pattern and strengthen your core muscles
3 Adapt according to conditions so you don’t strain your lower back. Try to maintain a natural lumbar curve even when there is a lot of swell, choppy or windy… and especially when you are becoming fatigued. Whilst surfing this is even more difficult. Some people favour a shorter paddle, which means you are more inclined to bend at the waist. In this case in order to place the paddle as far forward as normal you may need to stretch further forward with your arms and bend more at the hips and knees.
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4. Flexibility… I know stretching is often the last thing you want to do when you could be on the water. But if a muscle group that attaches to the pelvis is tight (hamstrings, hip flexors, lumbar extensors and abdominals), it can alter pelvic mobility, which could impact on your lower back. Include major muscle group stretches in a warm-up/cool down as a minimum. I will also try and discuss this and the kind of things to look out for soon.
5. Don’t be lazy when lifting your board… Too obvious to even mention? Probably, but a 15 kg board puts enough force through the lumbar spine to cause a disc injury.

HOW FIT SHOULD YOU BE FOR YOUR AGE

Exercise won’t just help you maintain a healthy weight, it could be the single most important step you can take for your mental and physical health, and the best way possible to keep the effects of ageing under control.

Exercise can reduce your risk of stroke, type 2 diabetes and some cancers by up to 50 per cent, and lower your risk of early death by nearly a third.

It can also cut your risk of osteoarthritis by up to 83 per cent, boost mood and sleep quality and reduce your risk of depression and dementia.
The official recommendation is to be active daily, with at least two-and-a-half hours of physical activity a week. But a recent report from the British Heart Foundation found that 44 per cent of adults never exercise. The good news is it’s never too early or too late to start.
Use these tests to check whether you’re as fit as you should be for your age, right up to your 80s – the experts then explain what you can do to improve your fitness, whatever your age.

IN YOUR SEVENTIES?

SEVENTIES
Specialists agree it’s never too late for exercise and activity to make a difference. “You can rejuvenate 20 years of lost strength through physical activity,” says Dawn Skelton, an exercise physiologist and professor of ageing and health . Even if you have been inactive for many decades, gentle activity now can reverse the decline.
Challenge: Up and go
Measure a 3m distance and place a dining room chair at one end. Ask a friend to stand at the other end with a stopwatch.
Sit yourself comfortably on the chair, get the friend to start the timer, then get up, walk the distance, walk back and sit down again. The clock stops the moment your bottom hits the chair.
A score of 12 seconds or less is excellent, if you score 13 to 20 seconds your balance could be impaired, 20 seconds plus could indicate problems with mobility.

Even if you have been inactive for many decades, gentle activity in your seventies can reverse the decline.

Your exercise aim: Vicky Johnston, a physiotherapist, recommends practising this at every opportunity. “If you’re watching TV, get up every time the ads come on, and lower yourself slowly when you sit back down, to work your muscles against gravity.
“If you slump back with an audible ‘oof’, you’ve not controlled your descent,” she says.
“Do something that gets you breathing a little more deeply than normal – for ten minutes three times a day, five days a week. Try marching on the spot while you’re washing up or getting off the bus one stop earlier.”
She also advises regular balance work – either through tai chi classes, or single leg stands.
“Balancing involves co-ordination of the muscles in the ankles and hips; this will make you more stable on uneven ground, or on a moving bus.”
Protect your knees by strengthening the thigh muscles. Sitting on a chair, straighten your legs in front of you, hold for five seconds and then slowly return to the starting point. Repeat 12 to 15 times.

 

BACK PAIN AND SPORTS – Biking

Picture1111Bicycling
Bicycling mainly strengthens the muscles of your legs which is important as it takes the strain off your back when getting in and out of chairs and when lifting. It does not do much for the muscles around your spine but if you try to keep your tummy muscles tense and your back in the correct alignment then you will be teaching the muscles to stabilise your spine as you bike. Mountain biking on uneven surfaces can cause jarring and sudden compressions (squeezing) on the spine.
Tips to help make bicycling easier on your back include:.
• Select the best bicycle for your purpose. For casual bike riders, a mountain bike with higher, straight handle bars (allow more upright posture), and bigger tires (more shock absorption) may be a better option than a racing style bicycle
• Adjust the bicycle properly to fit one’s body. If possible, this is best achieved with the assistance of an experienced professional at a bicycle shop
• Use proper form when biking; distribute some weight to the arms and keep the chest up; shift positions periodically
• Periodically gently lifting and lowering the head to loosen the neck and avoid neck strain
• Discuss and review your pedaling technique with your physiotherapist or other knowledgeable professional in order to get the most out of the exercise
• Use shock absorbing bike accessories including seats and seat covers, handlebar covers, gloves, and shock absorbers on the front forks (front shocks or full suspension shocks depending on the type of riding you plan to do and the terrain)
• The muscles that bring your leg up toward your abdomen are called flexors. They are used a lot when you ride a bicycle. Keeping these muscles stretched out is important because it will help keep the proper balance in the muscles around your spine and hips.

IMPROVE YOUR GOLF WITH PHYSIOTHERAPY

Increase the length of your drives
Improve your flexibility
Improve your consistency
Improve your endurance
Improve your balance
Improve your swing speed

IMPROVE YOUR GOLF

If you want to do all or some of the above you need a golf exercise/conditioning programme. Contact Jacki to discuss 0800568621

For more technical information carry on reading.

Physiotherapy can help to identify loss of the normal range of movement in those key joints – hips, back shoulders and wrists. Faulty patterns of movement due to loss of strength, tight muscles or bad habits can also be identified and corrected with individualised strength and stretching programmes.

Physiotherapy can also assist in your recovery from injury and get you back on the golf course more quickly.
Approximately 60% of all golfers will sustain an injury at some stage playing golf. In amateur golf players these are commonly due to overuse, poor swing biomechanics and/or hitting the ground. Most of the injuries occur in the lower back, shoulders, elbows, hands and wrists.

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Fig 1

Set up/Addressing the Ball

  1. The hips should be at 45 degrees flexion, the pelvis in a neutral position ( this can be assessed by a physiotherapist and refers to the pelvic tilt not the rotation of the pelvis required by the back swing) and knees slightly bent .
  2. Approximately 60% of your weight should be on the back foot and you should be able to maintain balance in this position without swaying your hips to the right or losing the above  set up position  (Fig1). This is a stable base from which to start the back swing.

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Fig 2.

Back swing.

  1. As you move into the back swing your hips and upper back rotate in relation to your pelvis. If you are at all stiff in your hips or upper back there will be increased rotation strain on your lower back. Reduced strength in the muscles which stabilise the lower back, hipand pelvis  will also lead to problems in this area and make it difficult to maintain this posture during the back swing.
  2. During the back swing your upper body should lean slightly away from the hole.  If your upper body is leaning towards the hole your lower back will go into extension and this may lead to lower back pain. This is probably due to compensation for a lack of upper back rotation.
  3. As your back arm ( right arm in a right handed golfer) reaches the top of the swing it rotates backwards  at the shoulder (abduction/external rotation)  and the wrist cocks(radial deviation). If there is any stiffness or reduction in these two movements then the back swing is compromised and extra strain is put on the joints, especially the elbow.
  4. Both shoulders/arms need a stable base to work from so it is important that the shoulder blade muscles are strong .
  5. The wrist needs to be stable so that as your wrist cocks at the top of the back swing it does not  collapse into extension. If the wrist goes into extension, overuse of the wrist extensor muscles can lead to tennis elbow.
  6. During the back swing your left arm comes across your chest and the shoulder joint and muscles need to be flexible.  In mature golfers reduced shoulder movement in this direction may cause shoulder impingement and in younger  more flexible players, excessive joint movement can lead to instability

follow through

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fig 3

Down swing and follow through.

  1. The actions of the body during the down swing and follow through are also  affected by lack of flexibility in your hips, back, shoulders and wrists  as well as by strength, endurance and patterns of movement

Physiotherapists are able to assess the range of movement in your hips, upper back, shoulders and wrists to ensure that you have the optimal range of movement. Current research  has demonstrated the average range of movement in these joints required for the golf swing when using long irons or woods. If you have a reduced range of movement then it will affect your golf swing, the club head speed at contact, your susceptibility to injury when playing and the ability of your golf coach to improve your golf.
For all players, especially the older player (50 years and older) a conditioning programme including stretching of joints and muscles and strengthening of muscles, starting a golf game with a full warm-up, swinging with a proper technique, and having sufficient stamina for a full round – are highly recommended for those who wish to play golf .

Fatigue is believed to adversely influence coordination and reflexes and thus contribute to injury. Research has demonstrated  that for older players conditioning programmes prevent injury and they also have the potential to improve performance. Programmes which incorporate flexibility, strength, endurance, speed and balance exercises that are specifically tailored to the demands of golf are likely to be the most effective. While expensive gym machines and other devices are available, equipment does not always need to be elaborate. Home-based programmes incorporating bodyweight, weighted clubs or elastic tubing resistance can be utilised

 

 

 

 

 

 

COMMON CHRONIC OR RECURRING RUNNING INJURIES

COMMON CHRONIC OR RECURRING RUNNING INJURIES

The severity of running injuries can vary from those which prevent you from running to those nagging injuries which cause you mild discomfort and reduce enjoyment of your chosen sport. Obviously if you have an injury which prevents you running you need to seek physiotherapy treatment in order to get back on the road but if you have a nagging injury which does not actually stop you running – then you have a choice. You can either carry on and hope that it doesent get worse or seek treatment. Treatment may involve reducing your running initially, orthotics, and starting on a long term proactive injury prevention strategy such as stretches, strength training and retraining your gait. Runners homework!!
COMMON PHYSICAL FACTORS WHICH MAY LEAD TO RUNNING PROBLEMS.
Weak lower back or core muscles
Strong back/stomach muscles are essential to stabilize your lower back when running so that there is not excessive movement of your vertebrae and pelvis as your legs pound out those miles. As your legs swing forward and land your pelvis and back should be stable. Your pelvis should not go up and down with each foot strike, it should not rotate excessively and your lower back should not arch as you push off.
Weak hip abductors, extensors and lateral rotators
Hip abductors are the muscles which move leg out sideways and as such stabilize the pelvis when you are weight bearing. The hip extensors also help to stabilise your hip when weight bearing.The hip lateral rotators rotate the hip/knee outwards and stop the hip/knee turning in when weight bearing.

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A – The hip abductors don’t exhibit any weakness
B – The whole upper body shifts to the right – very weak hip abductors
C – The hip/pelvis is raised on the weight bearing side – weak hip abductors
D – The hip and knee turn in on the weight bearing side – weak abductors and lateral rotators

Hip-Weakness-Pronation

Weak hip abductors and lateral rotators allow the lower leg to rotate inwards and lead to increased torsional stress from the hip down to the foot as in diagramme.

Conditions such as patella femoral syndrome( pain over the front of the knee), hip pain, plantar fasciitis, shin splints and Ilio Tibial Band Syndrome may result.

 

 

 

Weak, tight and/or unbalanced quadriceps.

The quadriceps muscle is the large muscle on the front of the thigh and is made up of four muscles which end at a common tendon below the kneecap. Problems occur when the medial and lateral parts of the quadriceps become unbalanced and there is an uneven pull on the patella giving rise to patella femoral syndrome(PFS) where the patella is pulled out of alignment ( as in 2b )

 

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Tightness of Rectus Femorus, which is the most superficial of the quadriceps muscles, will cause the patella to ride higher than normal which can also be a factor in PFS. Research has shown that weakness of the whole quadriceps mechanism is a major factor in long term anterior knee pain (PFS)

Hamstring problems

The hamstrings are the large muscles on the back of our thighs which bend our knees, extend our hips and drive us up hills when running. The hamstrings can be a problem if they are weak. They can be short and weak or long and weak. Either way it is important to strengthen the hamstrings and in the case of the short hamstring – to stretch it.

Pronated or supinated feet
When running the foot naturally pronates as the foot hits the ground and supinates at push off. There is a problem however when there is excessive pronation or supination. A person with a pronated foot has a reduced arch/flat foot and one with a supinated foot has a high arch.

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Factors which will influence gait and lead to excessive pronation or supination are incorrect hip rotation at foot strike, poor lumbar stability, pain and injury leading disturbed muscle function in the leg or foot and anatomical discrepancies .

 

 COMMON RUNNING INJURIES 

PATELLOFEMORAL SYNDROME (PFS) (anterior knee pain)

Picture61Commonly known as “runners knee” this is an irritation of the cartilage on the underside of the patella or kneecap because the patella has migrated laterally and is not sitting in its specially designed groove at the bottom end of the patella. See diagramme under Weak, tight and/or unbalanced quadriceps. It is usually noticed during long runs, going up or down hills and stairs and after sitting for a long time especially with the knees bent.

The risk factors are weak quads, gluts, lumbar and hip stabilizing muscles, excessive pronation and tight hip flexors.
Rehabilitation involves strengthening the quads, gluts, lumbar stabilizers, stretching the hip flexors if tight, corrective taping of the patella, orthotics and gait retraining – see below

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There are special knee braces which can be used instead of corrective taping of the patella.

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The above Mojo brace can be used for anterior knee pain.

ACHILLIES TENDONITUS
Picture41The Achilles tendon attaches the two major calf muscles to the back of the heel. When under too much stress the tendon becomes irritated and inflammed. A tender lump is usually able to be palpated on the tendon.
Risk factors are suddenly increasing training, especially hill and speed work, tight or weak calf muscles, poor hip and lumbar stabilizers, faulty foot mechanics such as pronation or supination.
Rehabilitation involves ice if acute, massage, stretching (gentle) and eccentric strengthening of the calf muscles, taping, addressing any hip and lumbar instability and orthotics if necessary.

 

HAMSTRING PROBLEMS

Picture11The hamstrings can become a problem when they are weak and either too short or too long.
If the pain in your hamstrings comes on quickly and the area bruises it is likely that you have strained the muscle in which case you will need to stop running and seek physiotherapy treatment. If it is a less severe chronic nagging injury you can usually run but you need to take it easy. A good alternative while healing takes place is bicycling, pool running or swimming.
Rehabilitation consists of stretching and strengthening exercises for your hamstrings, buttock strengthening exercises, taping and deep tissue massage. Wearing compression tights during and after a run can be helpful.

 

PLANTAR FASCIITUS

Picture31The plantar fascia is a thick band of fibrous connective tissue which supports the arch of your foot and runs from the arch to the toes.
At risk factors are excessive supination or pronation, increasing your running mileage too quickly, standing on a hard floor for too long without corrective footwear, weak or tight calf muscles, tight hip flexors, weak lumbar stabilizing muscles and a history of low back pain.
Rehabilitation consists of ice ( rolling your foot over a frozen bottle five times a day), stretching and massaging the plantar fascia, strengthening or stretching the calf muscles and strengthening the lumbar stabilising muscles, taping and orthotics.
Running through it can delay healing which is notoriously slow and can take up to a year or more. It is advisable to do alternative exercise such as pool running or swimming to keep the weight off your feet.

SHIN SPLINTS

Picture21Shin splints are small tears in the muscle which lies over the shin bone, or where the muscle meets the bone. They cause an ache down the front of your lower leg.At risk are those new to running or who have returned to running after a long period of no running and have done too much too quickly. They can affect those people with excessive pronation or supination, those who are wearing old shoes or the wrong shoes.

Rehabilitation initially involves stopping running and dealing with the inflammation by using ice, anti-inflammatory medication and rest. Kinesio tape can help by inhibiting the muscle action, correct running shoes and orthotics can help. When returning to running it is important to increase the mileage gradually.

ILIOTIBIAL BAND SYNDROME (ITB)
Picture51The ITB runs down the side of the thigh from the hip to the knee and while running with the knee bending and straightening, friction can occur between the band and the side of the knee causing pain.
At risk are those runners who increase their mileage too quickly, do a lot of down hill running, have weak hip and lumbar stabilizers, over pronate or have a leg length discrepancy.
Rehabilitation initially involves rest, strengthening the hip and lumbar stabilizers and knee extensors, shoes or orthotics to correct excessive pronation, stretching or using a foam roller on your ITB to make it more flexible. Returning to running should involve a gradual increase in mileage.