Mini- Mos is here again. Have you got your runners toolkit?

2015 will be our third year sponsoring this iconic local Mosman running event that takes place on Sunday 14 June. The Mini-Mos is a great community event and we hope you have dusted off your runners and are getting some miles in. Consistency in training is the key to performing in events like this and you can only achieve consistent training if you are injury free. Here we look at what props every runner should have at home to help maintain their tissue mobility and flexibility so they can stay injury free.

2015 will be our third year sponsoring this iconic local Mosman running event that takes place on Sunday 14 June. The Mini-Mos is a great community event and we hope you have dusted off your runners and are getting some miles in. Consistency in training is the key to performing in events like this and you can only achieve consistent training if you are injury free. Here we look at what props every runner should have at home to help maintain their tissue mobility and flexibility so they can stay injury free.

 
In my experience both as a Physiotherapist dealing with overuse injuries on a daily basis and as an (ageing!!) endurance athlete there are several key things that every runner should be doing to minimise their risk of getting injured. The repetitive nature of our sport lends itself to muscles that develop limited ranges of motion and potentially put stress on other tissues within the system that eventually leads to injury. From a very basic standpoint we want to reduce this tightness, shortening, reduced range of movement or whatever we want to label it that develops as a result of repeated use. There are three very basic props that every runner should own and use after every run session to help “reset” their tissue length and I refer to these as a “Runner’s Toolkit”. These are:
 
1.     The good old trusty foam roller.
2.     A stretch band (not to be confused with a piece of resistance theraband)
3.     A trigger point or muscle release device. eg. pocket physio, tennis, squash or golf ball
 
The foam roller is essentially a self massage device to roll your muscles over. Think calves, quads, ITB’s, hamstrings as the main muscle groups to target. Spend anywhere from 30 seconds to 2 minutes on each depending what feels tight.
 
 
The stretch band is like an elasticated car seat belt and takes the work out of holding a stretch. Loop it around your waist to stretch your hamstrings and adductors or over your shoulder to stretch your hip flexors. Again around 60 seconds per stretch is ideal.
 
The trigger point device is another muscle release or self massage tool. Lay on the floor and place it under a tight band of muscle (thinking Glutes, hip flexors, TFL) until it feels slightly uncomfortable and hold for 20 seconds before moving to another tight spot in that muscle. Do 2-4 spots in each muscle before moving on. A specific trigger point device such as a “pocket physio” will work best but you can make do with a tennis, gold or squash ball.
 
The idea is to do the muscle release (foam roller and trigger point release) first and then follow it up with your stretch band and other stretching exercises. The above is a good outline of a basic program and downlaod an exercise sheet here that you can start with.
 
If you have any queries on how to correctly use any of the props or would like a program that is specific to your sport, injury history and goals which will offer you better results then please call to book an appointment with your SquareOne Physio. Remember that staying injury free is the best way to achieve any athletic, fitness or health related goals so please make sure that your “Runner’s Toolkit” gets plenty of use and isn’t laying in the corner gathering dust!!
 
We have various options on stretchbands, trigger devices and foam rollers for sale at both of our Mosman Clinics.