Runners Guide: How to prevent Running Related Injuries with Single Leg Exercises.
Importance of Single Balance and Pelvic Stability in Runners!
By definition, running is a plyometric activity that involves bounding from one leg to the next in a balanced manner.
Runners are constantly stabilizing from one leg to the next, hopefully in a controlled manner. However when there is weakness in a runners hip muscles (mainly their glutes) there tends to be a lack of control during single leg stance which can lead to abnormal running mechanics and increased risk for injury. It is very common for runners to lack the appropriate muscle performance in the gluteus medius and gluteus minimus muscles which are prime pelvic stabilizers, especially during single leg stance.
If your glutes are lacking sufficient strength and endurance while you are transitioning from one leg to the next and ramping up mileage, there is less control in your hips down to your ankle and foot. This can lead to increased compressive or tensile forces on your joints, ligaments and tendons during each step and result in a running related or overuse type of injury.
To avoid running related injuries, it is imperative for runners to work on strengthening their glutes and more importantly doing so in single leg balance as it directly relates to the nature of the activity. The more power, endurance and strength you have in your glutes, the more control you will have during each step.
Below are two videos of single leg balance drills to improve your lateral hip strength, pelvic stability and to improve overall dynamic balance.
For more information on how to appropriately apply resistance training into your routine while running without over doing it, call Restore Physical Therapy. We will analyze your running mechanics, test your strength and flexibility and design a program that will fit in with your running routine.
Stay tuned for the upcoming- “Runners Guide and Injury Prevention”— coming soon!