Since it is now marathon season with Manchester Marathon this weekend and London Marathon on Sunday 28th April, we thought we would talk about the challenges facing a runner and show you some pilates exercises that will help your training and recovery. Good Luck to all those runners in training!
The challenge to the runner
- To absorb the impact between runner and ground
- To have the strength and control in the lower limb to manage the high impact at the knee and ankle
- To have adequate control at gluts and centre muscles to stabilize pelvis and trunk
- To have good foot placement to allow shock absorption and optimal force for push off
- To have good strength and mobility throughout upper and lower limb muscles to maximise forwards propulsion
- Below are some Pilates exercises to add to your training regime; the first 3 are to promote control and strength and the second 3 are for mobility.
Single leg deadlift
- Start position: Standing on one leg, with other leg slightly behind. Hands resting on hips. Knee soft, neutral posture.
- Keep spine tall, bend at the hip forward with a long spine. Simultaneously allow the rear leg to raise maintaining neutral hip posture
- Inhale to hold
- Slide tail bone down to the floor to restack spine on pelvis and stand upright
- Start position: In supine rest position one leg in table top position.
- Press foot down into floor to float pelvis off floor to neutral hip posture. Keep pelvis level and maintain leg in table top position
- Inhale to hold
- Lower pelvis down to rest position
- Repeat x10 each side
Runners leg pull in prone
- Start position: On hands and knee with toes tucked underneath. Shoulders at approx 100° flex. Lumbar spine neutral if possible and scapular position set.
- Press down through hands and toes to hover knees. Then extend to come forwards into plank position
- Maintaining upper body posture flex one hip to move knee towards chest, then push the leg back behind to straighten knee. Repeat x 6-8
- Then repeat on the opposite leg. Fold knees to bring weight back before lowering them to the floor
Hip extension mobility: Cobra
Lying on your tummy, extend your elbows lifting your chest up off the floor
Spinal rotation: Arm opening
Lying on your side, open out your arms twisting your upper back
Lateral flexion mobility: Standing mermaid
Standing, raise your arm overhead stretching your side.
These exercises are a guide and if you would like a personalised program or have any running injuries that require treatment, then please contact us at the clinic.