Strength Training for Runner’s- 5 great exercises to prevent injury and improve performance

Running is the simplest and most time efficient way to get fit, de-stress and shift unwanted kilo’s. Whatever your reasons for running, whether it be for fun, fitness or performance then having a strength base so that your musculoskeletal system can tolerate, absorb and reuse the impact forces is essential to avoid injury. As a general rule if you have no strength training history (ie. weights in the gym) then undertaking a strengthening program before starting a running program is highly advisable.

Below are 5 great strengthening exercises you can do if you are starting out, or if you are a seasoned runner then adding them in to a couple of your workouts a week will help improve performance. As we always say individual cases will vary and if you have any specific concerns please contact your SquareOne Physio.

  
1. Single Leg Bridge on a Chair- posterior chain glutes and hamstrings are often neglected and weakness can result in injury. Hamstring tendinopathy and gluteal tendinopathy are two consequences of these muscle groups not being adequately strengthened. If you are struggling to do single leg, use two legs on the chair.
 
2. Split Squats- Another good one for the glutes and quads. Contains an eccentric component that will reduce your chance of sore muscles post running.
 
3. Park Bench Step Ups- builds strength while reducing the injury risk associated with hill running. Drive your opposite leg up to make it harder.
 

 Running is the simplest and most time efficient way to get fit, de-stress and shift unwanted kilo’s. Whatever your reasons for running, whether it be for fun, fitness or performance then having a strength base so that your musculoskeletal system can tolerate, absorb and reuse the impact forces is essential to avoid injury. As a general rule if you have no strength training history (ie. weights in the gym) then undertaking a strengthening program before starting a running program is highly advisable. Below are 5 great strengthening exercises you can do if you are starting out, or if you are a seasoned runner then adding them in to a couple of your workouts a week will help improve performance. As we always say individual cases will vary and if you have any specific concerns please contact your SquareOne Physio.

 
1. Single Leg Bridge on a Chair– posterior chain glutes and hamstrings are often neglected and weakness can result in injury. Hamstring tendinopathy and gluteal tendinopathy are two consequences of these muscle groups not being adequately strengthened. If you are struggling to do single leg, use two legs on the chair.
 
2. Split Squats- Another good one for the glutes and quads. Contains an eccentric component that will reduce your chance of sore muscles post running.
 
3. Park Bench Step Ups- builds strength while reducing the injury risk associated with hill running. Drive your opposite leg up to make it harder.
 
4. Reverse Lunge Walking- helps develop glute, quad and hamstring strength and co-ordination while bringing in a balance (proprioception) element.
 
5. Single Leg Calf Raises- good calf strength will reduce your risk of Achilles tendinopathy and calf muscle strain. Easy to do anywhere!
 
Click here to see a "How to" sheet on the above exercises