Running injuries -THE GLUTE CAVEAT .
Physiology first .
Be strong at the weakest place is known . Why not be strongest at a strong place ??
From a Palaeolithic hunter gatherer millions of years ago to a lifestyle with plenty of sitting hours has affected running in most of the recreational runners .
All know about this new smoking .
Gluteus muscles are the most pennated muscle with greatest surface area and mass . The multiple regions and muscular attachments proves multiple and varied roles apart from running .
A close look at a gymnast butt will prove this .
Physiologically the muscle fibres are such that they can work at low speed with high force and low level of force at high speed .
Running is a predominant sagittal plane activity and running needs effective hip extension and Gluteus maximus is the key hip extensor in sagittal plane .
And also true is that GLUTEUS MUSCLES ARE THE EASIEST MUSCLES TO BE INHIBITED IN HIP MOVER GROUP .
WHAT DO WEAK GLUTES DO ??
A weak / inhibited GLUTE leads to altered adaptation while running and otherwise .
1. A tilted pelvis – overloads hip joints , tronchanteric bursa , tendon insertions , overactive tensor fascia Lata and piriformis .
2. A knee drift inwards. Overloads tensor fascia , pes anserinus , patellofemoral joint and patellar tendon .
3. A knee drift outwards. Overloads inner and outer tibiofemoral compartments .
4. A sideway shift of the trunk overloads hip joints and vertebral disc space .
5 .A weak GLUTE lets the iliopsoas muscle take over leading to BACKACHES .
6 . It leads to a poor control over Femur bone . Your knee will do only that what your foot allows and the hips can control .( KNEE PAINS )
7 .Weak gluteus decreases proprioception and locks ankles which does not allow Hips to extend fully and you run this as a learned running form ( MUSCLE MOTOR ENGRAM ) leading to ( ANKLE PAIN AND PLANTAR FASCIITIS ) .
8 . A loaded HAMSTRINGS is given .
9 .Weak Glutes tires / pains the opposite shoulder and elbow (EPICONDYLITIS )as a compensatory mechanism .
10 . It loosens up the myo fascial grips around the hips leading to poor recoil and overuse of neck muscles causing post run HEADACHES .
CHECK GLUTEUS .
Aren’t my Gluteus muscles ok with years of running ??
Unless tested in hyper extension where they perform the best .
GLUTES WORK OUT PROGRESSION .
Put up some hip flexors stretches / exercises first post warm up .
All standing exercises as squats , deadlifts , lunges cause extension in one plane of movement . They also add hams in the process and may not load Glutes fully . It doesn’t mean to skip them .
The key is to go supine , prone and quadruped so that hips works up a multiplaner mode . It doubles your Glutes load as confirmed by EMG study .
LOAD YOUR GLUTES EXERCISES THAT PUTS HIP IN HYPER EXTENSION .
BAR BELL HIP THRUSTS .
WIDER STANCE SQUATS .
LONG STEP LENGTH LUNGES FRONT ( best )BACK AND SIDES .+/- weights .
4 . GLUTE BRIDGE WITH ALTERNATE KNEE PULL .
5 .SINGLE LEG EXERCISES (squats , deadlifts +/- arm row or a press , +/- weights .)
6 .BIRD DOG WITH WEIGHTS .
7 . FIRE HYDRANTS WITH BAND .
The reasons why the rehab guys put more emphasis on going prone , supine and quadruped .An attention to cross training . Add weights to cycling . A swim that is underwater or a pool exercise lying supine with extended body in water and kicking extended legs behind .
Put these sleeping Giants to do their best .