Wednesday, June 26, 2013

A Short Comment on Running Mechanics and Injury

The NYTimes has an article talking about a recent study indicating amount of ankle pronation was not associated with injury during running. I have a lot of say about this topic (with mechanical explanations), but I'll save that for later. Here's my comment to the article: The most important aspect of running isn't trying to achieve a specific form, or loading the body in a certain way. It's allowing the body time to adapt and recover to the stimulus. For instance, impact forces aren't inherently bad, the body actually likes them (somewhat). It's about how much, how quickly, and how often relative to the current conditioning of your joints, muscles, and tendons. Similar to altitude acclimation - go too high too quickly and you'll die, but go slowly and you'll adapt fully and be okay (up to a point). If people focused more on very slowly gradually increasing their mileage and pace, with many rest days built in, there would be a reduction of injuries - regardless of whether you run in shoes/heelstrike or barefoot, overpronate, etc...

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