Raise your hand if you want to get injured!
*Insert one of those “ain’t nobody got time for that” jokes.*
Yeah, I thought so….
That’s why I’m so excited to introduce you to Dr. Schweitzer via the return of my interview series. You might remember back in February I had my gait analyzed courtesy of Ideal Run. Well, Dr. Schweitzer was the man behind my analysis. Thanks for making me do all those squats :) Dr. Schweitzer is a Doctor of Physical Therapy and has more than fifteen years of experience in the field. He is a runner, triathlete and the founder of Ideal Run, which, as a refresher, is a personalized online gait analysis for runners. He practices at Premier Physical Therapy in Clearwater, FL.
As you’ll see I asked many questions about injuries and injury prevention in runners. I still consider myself in recovery from my stress fracture and I’m now more cautious than ever about priming myself for a strong, healthy running future. If I know you guys like I think I do, I’m sure you have the same priorities.
Without further ado…
Interview with Dr. Eric Schweitzer, owner of Ideal Run
Q: What is the most common gait and/or stride imbalance you see in runners?
A: We see a lot of hip weakness. Knees are the most frequent site of pain and the research shows much of this is from poor hip control and strength. This is easily corrected when identified.
Q: What exercises do you suggest all runners implement into their routine?
A: Strength training. Runners are infamous for only running, or, at best, doing only endurance cross training. Lift some weights. Preferably in patterns that mimic running.
Q: Have you ever worked with an elite athlete? If so, can you describe the reason they came to you and how you helped them succeed?
A: Yes, elite athletes faces injuries like the rest of us. Usually its due to repetitive overuse or, many times, they have the skill set but still, they have developed bad movement patterns that catch up to them. I have found poor mobility and/or poor motor control of key muscles in Olympic triathletes and runners.
Q: What injury do you deal with most frequently?
A: By far, knee pain. Knee pain makes up 42% of all running injuries. The second most common is ankle or plantar pain.
Q: Why do you suggest runners have their gait analyzed? Even if they don’t have a history of injuries?
A: Most running injuries are preventable because they occur slowly over time (are not traumatic in nature). Research shows us that running in an inefficient way stresses the body beyond capacity leading to injury. If we could individually watch and correct all currently pain-free runners, we could cut running injuries down immensely. Benjamin Franklin said “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” (<– love this)
Q: What is one piece of advice (physical and/or mental) for injured runners?
A: Gradually increase running and make no sudden changes in distance or speed and, above all, listen to your body. Even, and especially, if it disagrees with advice or treatment your being given.
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Your favorite running shoe? Sauncony Kinavara. Lightweight, neutral with a 4 mm drop. Love it.
Favorite distance? Half marathon
Morning or evening run? Evening, only because I guess I’m not a morning person!
Favorite running location? Currently, the waterfront of downtown St. Pete (FL)
Post-race meal of choice? Eggs and maybe a pancake or two :)
Susie @ SuzLyfe says
Glute and hip strength and activation make or break your running! (don’t worry, we will work on these with you :D)
Susie @ SuzLyfe recently posted…Making an Impact, Moving Boxes, and Flywheel Giveaway!
Phew! Need all the guidance I can get in that area!
Brie @ Lean, Clean, & Brie says
I’ve never been injured as a runner and continue to do everything I can to prevent any injury in the future., especially lifting weights. I love the advice on listening to your body — so important!
Brie @ Lean, Clean, & Brie recently posted…10 Minute Strong Core Workout
Whatever you’re doing, keep it up! It’s obviously working :)
Running Betty says
Eric is such a great participant in and supporter of the local running scene. He knows his stuff!
Running Betty recently posted…Beautiful – The Carole King Musical in Tampa
He gave such thorough responses! You can definitely tell his passion for the running and health industry.
Alyssa @ renaissancerunnergirl says
Knowing the connection between all your body’s workings, especially hip to knee, is so critical and something I don’t understand well enough for having had issues with both. Thanks for sharing this :)
Alyssa @ renaissancerunnergirl recently posted…A Connecticut Bridal Shower
Oh, same here! It’s nice to have a refresher. I think I need to draw a big diagram and paste it on my wall.
Sarah @pickyrunner says
Hip imbalances <—- story of my life. If I had only known that my knee problems were connected to my hip problems years ago, I would have likely spent far less time injured. This is why I'm paying an arm and a leg for core power. It keeps me healthy and strong so I'm able to run!
Sarah @pickyrunner recently posted…Bit by the Running Bug
I had knee problems a few years ago (not nearly as bad as yours) but strengthening my hips worked wonders. Now I need to work on hip flexibility and stretching.
ACKTIVE LIFE says
Oh I love when you do these interviews! I am currently taking a week break, so I prevent myself from getting injured, because my body is tired and sore and just POOPED! So I am listening to my body and taking a well earned break, so I can come back stronger and more focused. :)
ACKTIVE LIFE recently posted…The Week In Review…
I love that you know your body so well. Breaks benefit so many aspects of our training!
Christina @ The Blissful Balance says
KNEES. They are my problem big-time. Any time I start to increase my mileage, like even just barely, the knees are the first to go. My running form is horrible! Great interview, love this series!!
Christina @ The Blissful Balance recently posted…Braised Beef Short Rib Tacos + 6 Creative Recipes for Your Next Taco Party
When I did that Ideal Run gait analysis I was surprised that my form wasn’t as “perfect” as I assumed it was. My hip drops need to go though (aka I need to work on that).
Amanda @ ExploringLifeAndThings says
Fortunately I haven’t had to deal with too many injuries since starting runners. Little things here and there that cause me to take a week or 2 off running have happened, but I’m super thankful it hasn’t been anything serious.
That is awesome, Amanda! And admirable :)
Julia @ Lord Still Loves Me says
Wow, I found this is very interesting! I didn’t realize so many people had knee injuries. I’ve been lucky to not really have running pain, but when I do feel any stinge of pain, it’s all in my shins.
Julia @ Lord Still Loves Me recently posted…Recent Reads #3 April 2016
My sister has shin pain when she runs, too. She found the calf compression socks help!
Wow, I love this! Thank you for sharing, and I think that I realized that I was really imbalanced on strength training a couple years ago. That was a good realization, but it was hard to get into ‘loving the weights’ when I loved running so much. I definitely have weak knees and weak ankles, so they always need a little bit of extra ‘babying.’
Emily recently posted…Have You Ever Been Arrested?
I resonate with the fact that it’s hard to get into “loving weights” when you already love running. It takes some planning and “sacrifice” to fit in regular strength training!
This was such an interesting read! Thank you for sharing this!
sarah recently posted…Coffee Chat #1
I’m glad you enjoyed it!
Liv @ Healthy Liv says
Fun interview! I’ve been injured from running and like he said, a lot of it was apparently due to hip weakness, grrrrr. Gotta be better about doing those strength exercises!
Liv @ Healthy Liv recently posted…Natural Beauty Products that Work
Seriously these damn hips of ours…clam shells and bridges and monster walks, oh my!
Ellen @ My Uncommon Everyday says
I’ve never been injured, really, but I do experience some hip/knee pain occasionally. I think I’m working with a coach this summer to try to correct my form and get stronger. I love running, and I want to be able to do it for a long time :)
Ellen @ My Uncommon Everyday recently posted…Ehlers-Danlos Awareness: What I Didn’t Know
That’s exciting that you’re working with a coach! I’m ready to get started with Susie so I can extended my running life too :)
Kristina @Ms.Modify says
I’m not much of runner, I try and then give up easily! This is great info and inspires me to try again!
Give it a try! If you run you are a runner :)
Dani @ Dani California Cooks says
Oh man – KNEES! Our poor joints. Running is tough on the body! I definitely need to do more strength training. Awesome interview!
Dani @ Dani California Cooks recently posted…One Year Later & News!
Thanks, Dani! I think about that a lot too. I really should run on softer surfaces (trails), but there aren’t any near me.