This Will Sneak Up On You & Destroy Your Running


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I want to show you something a patient came into the clinic for today. Before we get started, if you’re looking to get more information of what this runner’s going to be doing to improve her running, you can go to this link where there will actually be strength workouts that you guys can just try for $1.

Above is a run analysis. A patient was in my clinic today, we put her back together but there was a conversation about how do you stay injury free? And she’s training for a marathon and the point is, is that you have to have stronger hips but you may not know if your hips are strong, whether you’re running healthy now or not. This stuff is happening all the time that I’m gonna show you.

And the point is, is that as a runner there’s nothing more clear in the research that if you’re going to be healthy you need to do some strength training and you need to do it in a smart way. Your hips don’t function on the ground so clam shells, leg lifts, bridges are not super valuable for runners. You want to strength train in a way that mimic your running on the road and I’m gonna show you that now and I’m gonna show you some of the programs that we use. But I wanna show you this analysis of a runner that came in because hip strength, when I say hip it could be glute, it could butt strength, hip strength, whatever, it’s important for the knee, it’s important for the ankle, the back, everything revolves around this hip strength issue and it’s pretty clear in the research.

Now before I forget and before I show you this, remember you can find the links that the workouts that this runner’s gonna be doing on our site, on my site, You can try a dollar trial there. So this runner came in today. I’m gonna show you her and we’re gonna watch her run a little bit and I can see if I can get this set up. Great, so I’m just gonna play this. I don’t know how to slow it down. There’s probably a way to do that but we’re just gonna watch it. Traditionally, people be like, “Oh, you need to work on your running form.” And let’s just see if I can catch her here. And they would talk about this. Right here, I’m looking at my other screen over here but looking at it, “Oh, she’s a heel striker and her toes are pulled up. We gotta fix that.”

And I’m gonna tell you right out of the gate, this is not what this runner needs right now. She needs to be focused on something that’s way more important and I’m gonna get to that in a minute. And she does the exact same thing on the other side. When she’s hitting the ground, the foot’s out in front. Yeah, sure that can be worked on and fixed maybe but it’s not her number one thing to go after and truthfully one of the things that I look at in a runner is the fact that she could have a bent knee and this bent knee is really important.

This is what I want to show you guys. So here’s a runner about to contact the ground. She’s gonna come in contact with about three times her body weight in five milliseconds and that’s going to happen 80 times a minute over and over again. So ideally you’d want this to be really firm and really strong so that you’re not drifting through things.

So let me show you what happens here once she lands on her right foot. This runner was dealing with some left sided issues and you’re gonna see why. So she’s gonna come through. I gotta time this right. Oh, don’t move it. Ah, I missed it again. Okay, right here. So this is the point of mid stance so real quick just take a mental picture of what this looks like because when you’re in this position this is the running posture. When the foot’s right underneath this runner so you see her foot right underneath her body this is maximum point where you’re taking and accepting the maximal load of running.

From the point of contact to this point, this is where most of the injuries happen so if you can’t control the point of contact where your foot hits the ground to this point when the foot’s underneath you, things go sadly wrong. So we see her here and a lot of people will talk about hip drop. You’ve probably heard about that. They’re talking about the glute strength here and is the hip dropping down? He do see some hip drop. A little bit of hip drop is completely normal but I’m gonna drop something on you that a lot of people don’t realize is, a little bit of hip drop is not the issue. What we want to look for is the compensations from the hip drop. So one of the things that you guys can use if you take a little video of yourself is looking at, “Okay, does my hip drop uncontrollably? And then what’s the rest of the position of my body like?”

So let’s bring this down a little bit. I want to show you. One of the things I look at is I look at hip position, elbow position and shoulder position and I go below the hips and look at knee and ankle as well. So we see that our hip drops. Great, that’s gonna happen a little bit but does she compensate from above and below? You can see her elbows are pretty symmetrical and in line. Her shoulders are in line and her knee’s not drifting down and in too hard. So I would look at this and say, “Yeah, you got a little hip drop but this is actually normal and you look pretty good here and I wouldn’t change any of this.” So let’s go take a look at our other side. This is the injured side and I can tell you this runner right now is not injured. She’s doing well in training. She had some foot issues going on but let’s go right to there. Pretty asymmetrical, right? So let’s look at this.

The hip drops more. She’s got a higher degree of hip drop. Now let’s look at symmetry. Look at this left arm, how far out it kicks. So what I want you to imagine is, here’s the fulcrum of a teeter totter and you have all this weight outside of where the fulcrum is and it’s pulling down on the scap. She’s not strong enough to pull down with her glute and her butt muscle here so she kicks her arm out wide to counter balance. I’m gonna go to me. So you’re running along, you’re on your left side. I can’t control from my left hip, you’re not gonna be able to see this well and my office is pretty dirty but let’s just see what we can do here. So I’m not able to control real well. On my left side, as I’m standing on this side right here, what I’m gonna do is I’m gonna kick this left arm out to try to counterbalance all the weight over here. That is a compensation for a weak hip so her hips dropping down and she’s kicking her arm out to the side and not controlling through the hip.

This is a runner who did not have any hip issues. She was dealing with some knee and some foot issues. So let’s go back to looking at this. She’s got this arm pulled out. Her shoulders are level but here’s a massive compensation and now look at her knees. Her knees are knocking together. That was not happening on the other side. And really importantly, the thing is, is that this is a hip issue. So you think is just a one off. Let me show you again, see if I can get her here. Oh, I missed it. Where is it? Wait for it. I usually have really good software, I just couldn’t get it to work. Here’s her right side. Again, super symmetrical. Let’s bounce down here. Let’s watch her get onto her left side. Look at that left arm already kick out. And there’s her left side again. Really poor control. So what does this runner need? She needs hip strength. And by the way, if you’re looking to do better with your hip strength you can’t be doing clam shells. You have to be doing functional strengthening that pertains to running.

This runner, like many before her, will be trounced in training. She will get punished on that left side because she’s not controlling it. You should realize your body doesn’t care if you have a weak side. It’s gonna accomplish a task, which is your run but it’s going to pull from other areas so when we look at a runner with a foot issue or a knee issue, just like this runner, what are we experiencing? We’re experiencing areas that are getting overworked because the hip just isn’t contributing. Huge, huge problem. So anyone who is looking to get more information on this, I want you to take a look at this program. You can take a look for a dollar.

This is a strength program that targets these issues. So if you think you have some weak glutes, take a look at this. We have some boot camps in here, base three boot camps, the starter boot camp but we actually have something called butt camp, which is a fully strengthened, balance and hip strength program.

It’s all located, you go and you log in, there’s this basics program. You click in here and basic base three boot camp. This boot camp is completely designed to help you with your hip strength and to get there. You can try it out for a dollar. You can stream it on your phone or any device you want and just get started. They’re half an hour strength workouts. The key is to really start training smart. If you’re looking to train smarter it’s less junk mileage and it’s fixing this stuff because by the time it becomes a problem, you’re gonna take months or weeks to get the problem to go away and you have to get your strength back. So if you’re training for a half marathon, a full marathon, this is important. The key take home message is this, you need hip strength. The research supports it.

You’re gonna hear tons of people talking about hip, glute, butt strength, whatever.

It’s not accomplished by clam shells, it’s not accomplished by leg lifts and it’s not accomplished by bridges. It’s accomplished with balance exercises and strength exercises are gonna make a difference. So if you have questions on this or what you could be doing to improve your hip strength so that you’re not this runner that I just showed you, let me know in the comments and I’ll try to help you out as best I can. I’ll be around for most of Friday, particular tonight and maybe I’ll even go live again if I need to. But don’t forget, if you’re looking to improve your hip strength, you’re looking for strength workouts you can use in your own training, if you log in, you can use the link above. You can go into the program section of Run Smart Online. We have a basics program, a kettlebell program, a yoga program and a core program you can take a look at.

I’m gonna start switching over to Run Forum soon but I really wanna drill home the strength because strength, to me, can overpower poor run form, it can overpower poor training and it’s the number one thing that I go to with runners. Before I fix run form it’s always about fixing the strength. So I hope this help. I hope this help sort of visualize what happens when you have a weak side and know that you may not even know you have a weak side like this runner. And you can do something about it. You just have to do the right stuff. So

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