Running Gait Analysis

running

Running repairs and Pilates sessions

Andy Watson is qualified pilates instructor with special skills and training in rehabilitation and running. Andy has worked with elite and recreational runners improving their form, technique and speed. More information about his new training offer is below.

Gait analysis
Running gait looks at the mechanics of how we propel our bodies forward. view poster

When we move it’s not so much about pushing forwards. It’s really the absorption of impact forces to spring load muscles and ligaments to help propel us along. This absorption and transfer of forces is the key to running well without pain and avoiding injury.
Everyone is slightly different due to length of limbs, strength and flexibility.

The natural style of an individual is always going to be their best running form. Gait improvements are the key not major bio mechanical change.

The benefits of a better gait are less stresses and strains on joints which can prevent injury and make running pain free. Making muscles better able to absorb energy in landing phase can make running up to 20% more easy.

Injury rehab, prevention and training
Most runners in training will have injuries or pains. In some cases strain or pain is a natural muscle and bone reaction to the body getting fitter. A good guide is that strain or soreness on the day is ok however it’s not so good if pain or discomfort is still at a high level the next day.
Gait analysis is probably the best way to see what may be happening and offer solutions and different approaches to reduce strain and allow better healing. If we move with less strain and better efficiency it’s going to help prevent injuries.

Key factors
Impact - how we hit the ground and the position the centre of gravity
Spring tension - how impact forces are distributed and/or absorbed
Alignment- does gravity assist or resist forward motion, is the body evenly loaded?
Compliance - is there too little or too much flexibility?

Treadmill and video analysis
A treadmill provides a great base for video analysis. It’s not completely natural because the ground is moving however there are so few variables that it’s the perfect foil for video analysis. It also allows timing of cadence. It’s the best tool for this process.

Running cues
Once the analysis is complete going back to the treadmill brings the active cues to life helping assess what works and doesn’t. Going back on the treadmill helps to see and feel more what may be happening.
Knowing where you are in space is one of the key ways that pilates and running fit hand in glove.

Pilates and running
Good breathing, alignment and core strength are fundamental principles of pilates. A good runner will be strong and breathe well. If they also have optimal alignment then they are less likely to get injured and be more likely to heal better. A Pilates based strength and conditioning programme can be optimal.

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