The Big 3 for Runners

Running is one of the greatest aerobic forms of exercise that most people should be trying to incorporate into their lives, however there can be problems that come with it.

Injuries can pop up due to poor loading tolerance, technique flaws, doing too much too soon etc. When starting or fixing your running, there are 3 main components you want to address:

  • Hip extension/glute drive 
  • Hip flexion/knee drive
  • Hip adduction/knee window
Running Exercises

Hip Extension

A lot of hip/knee issues when running (PFPS, ITBFS etc.) can be attributable to minimal/no use of the glute muscles, particularly in the push-off phase.

Inadequate use of the glute muscles to push-off from stance phase can lead to overuse of the quad muscles and resultant knee pain.

As the leading foot goes forward and strikes the ground, it then needs to straighten out and “push the road back” by having the hip extend and making use of the glute muscles.

Here are 3 great exercises to help this.

Hip Flexion

A “shuffly” gait can be the result of lack of hip flexion/knee drive in your running technique.

Further, it can result in an increased step rate, decreased flight time and overall unwanted stress on respective tissues in the hip/knee region leading to potential problems.

Knee drive is particularly important in the swing phase of the running gait cycle, aiming to bring the knee to 60-90 degrees as the other leg goes into hip extension.

This will ensure more distance is achieved per step, better use of surrounding muscles and a more economic running style.

Reducing Hip Adduction

When looking at people running, there can be cases where the knees are “brushing against each other” and thus the “knee window” is decreased. This can be put down to anatomical reasons (increased Q-angle), muscle imbalances in the hip region or lack of control globally in the lower limb.

One key muscle involved in keeping the knee aligned and the pelvis level is the glute medius. As opposed to the glute max being involved mainly in the push-off phase of running, this smaller muscle is involved in making sure the knee doesn’t drop into the mid-line and brush against the other, as well as making sure that the pelvis stays nice and level, thus important in lower limb control.

If this muscle strength is deficient, it can lead to increased stress on the knee (particularly medial compartment) as well as hip when running.

The following 3 exercises show how we can train this part.

Want To Know More?

We’d suggest contacting our team at Precision Physio, so that we can help you with your individual case and likely get you in to see one of our great Exercise Physiologists, such as Dylan Bain who wrote this article.

How Do I Book An Appointment?

We’re taking the health of our clients, members and staff very seriously and our preference would be for you to call to book an appointment so that we can make sure to explain our approach to keeping you safe. You can call any of these numbers to schedule a session:

Online Consultations

Evolving with the current environment, we are also now offering online appointments, meaning that we can support anyone who is unable to leave their home. Sessions are done via our state of the art Telehealth system and as long as you have a laptop or tablet with an inbuilt camera, or a phone with camera, we can help!

To learn more about online consultations, please call us on any of the numbers listed above.

Precision Physio Marketing

Previous Post
How the Different Stages of the Menstrual Cycle Will Effect Your Training
Next Post
Post Training Recovery Smoothie

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill out this field
Fill out this field
Please enter a valid email address.