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Gain Strength to run faster

Faster, pain-free Park-Runs
PERFORMANCE
REHABILITATION
LIFESTYLE
Park Runs have helped revive the popularity of running (or jogging for most of us!). A five- kilometre run may be quite short, but it’s a challenge regardless because most of us try and aim for our best time. Functional strength training helps to strengthen the muscles you don’t realise you use when running and is a great way to ensure you reduce your risk of injury while increasing your strength and ability to run faster. Running faster doesn’t come from doing more and more distance, it comes from developing strength. A strong runner doesn’t only run consistently faster, but is also at a lower risk of injury, which is also very important. Research has consistently shown that specific strength training sessions can improve running performance. Having strong major muscle groups and specific smaller muscles can help you continue to move with the same effectiveness for longer, which leads to faster times in time trials and races. And if you’re a keen Park Run participant, some personal bests. When you start to tire and the strength required to for the same movement pattern weakens, it’s strength training that really helps you to keep going – if not strong, then at least still very steady until the end. It’s those that lack functional strength that start to fade dramatically once they begin to tire. Strength training for runners is not about lifting heavy weights. Instead, it should be specific to the needs of the individual runner, and functional in that it’s aimed at your weaknesses. As we age, we also gradually lose strength, unless we work regularly on increasing or maintaining it. Functional strength training under the guidance of a qualified Biokineticist will take the guesswork out of the process. He or she will quickly be able to determine your weaknesses and then incorporate appropriate exercises to allow you to make progressional improvements in strength, which you will notice in your running, both consciously and via clocking faster times. At The Practice, functional strength training is one of our areas of expertise. We’ve helped many a runner (and jogger) improve his or her performance not by running more, but by focusing on improving functional strength with just one or two sessions a week. To find out more about our functional strength training sessions, email info@thepracticesa.co.za or call 011 782 0393.