HOW OSTEOPATHY CAN HELP WITH RUNNING INJURIES AND PERFORMANCE
Osteopathy is a patient-centred health practice that focuses on the joints, the muscles and the spine. Read on to learn how it can help you prevent injury while running.
Osteopathy uses an evidence-based, holistic approach to healthcare involving hands-on treatment (manual therapies), health education, lifestyle management and exercise rehabilitation. People visit an osteopath for issues such as the neck, shoulder, knee and leg pain, lower back pain, sports and workplace injuries, postural issues, arthritis, osteoporosis, and much more.
So, how CAN osteopathy help runners?
If you’re in a hurry, why not check out our video on ‘Osteopathy for running injuries’?
Osteopaths are university trained to perform the following:
TAKE A FULL MEDICAL HISTORY
As Allied Health practitioners, we have to take a full medical history of our patients. It is one crucial part of our job.
UNDERTAKE A PHYSICAL EXAMINATION OR CLINICAL ASSESSMENT
We need to do some testing to check if you have, what we call in medicine, ‘RED FLAGS’. These are severe diseases or pathologies that can cause the symptoms that you may be experiencing.
PROVIDE TREATMENT PLANS AND MANUAL THERAPY
Receive a full manual therapy treatment that includes:
- Soft tissue massage or dry needling (if recommended)
- Spinal manipulations
- Osteopathic manipulative techniques
- Exercise rehabilitation program
- Pain strategies management plan
- Online access to your in home program and rehab package support
Why should you choose Osteopathy to support your running journey?
Osteopaths use a holistic approach to healthcare. In other words, we aren’t focusing on one part of your body but look at all the elements that can affect your performance or your injury.
There are huge bodies of scientific research that support this holistic approach, addressing the body as a whole.
WHAT ARE ‘KINEMATIC CHAINS’ AND HOW CAN THEY HELP MY RUNNING PERFORMANCE?
In physical therapy and sports medicine, many practitioners talk about “kinematic chains”.
Put simply, it is the notion that joints, muscles, nerves and body parts have an effect on one another during movement. When one is in motion, it creates a chain of events that affects the movement of neighbouring body parts. And often, many healthcare therapists miss those links.
Your body needs strength and mobility to sustain marathon events, the trail courses or the park runs over the weekend.
We know from research that lack of mobility could be a risk factor for sport injuries such as hamstring strains (1,3).
In addition, strength programs have shown to be really effective in the prevention of running injuries, which shows how much muscle function is important for your performance (4,7).
And, many other scientific studies found correlations between ankle, knee, hip and pelvis movements where altered function in one can affect concurrently to the other areas (8,11).
Working with an Osteopath to address all these elements will be key for you to continue your pain-free journey and learn the real causes of your issues.
Sugiura, Y., Sakuma, K., Sakuraba, K., & Sato, Y. (2017). Prevention of Hamstring Injuries in Collegiate Sprinters. Orthopaedic Journal of Sports Medicine, 5(1), 2325967116681524. doi:10.1177/2325967116681524.https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5298567/
Wan, X., Qu, F., Garrett, W. E., Liu, H., & Yu, B. (2017a). The effect of hamstring flexibility on peak hamstring muscle strain in sprinting. Journal of Sport and Health Science, 6(3), 283-289. doi:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jshs.2017.03.012
Wan, X., Qu, F., Garrett, W. E., Liu, H., & Yu, B. (2017b). Relationships among hamstring muscle optimal length and hamstring flexibility and strength. Journal of Sport and Health Science, 6(3), 275-282. doi:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jshs.2016.04.009
Rønnestad, B.R. and Mujika, I. (2014), Strength training and endurance performance. Scand J Med Sci Sports, 24: 603-612. doi:10.1111/sms.12104
Balsalobre-Fernández C, Santos-Concejero J, Grivas GV. Effects of Strength Training on Running Economy in Highly Trained Runners: A Systematic Review With Meta-Analysis of Controlled Trials. J Strength Cond Res. 2016;30(8):2361-2368. doi:10.1519/JSC.0000000000001316. https://journals.lww.com/nsca-jscr/Fulltext/2016/08000/Effects_of_Strength_Training_on_Running_Economy_in.36.aspx
Denadai BS, de Aguiar RA, de Lima LC, Greco CC, Caputo F. Explosive Training and Heavy Weight Training are Effective for Improving Running Economy in Endurance Athletes: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Sports Med. 2017;47(3):545-554. doi:10.1007/s40279-016-0604-z. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs40279-016-0604-z
Karsten B, Stevens L, Colpus M, Larumbe-Zabala E, Naclerio F. The Effects of a Sport-Specific Maximal Strength and Conditioning Training on Critical Velocity, Anaerobic Running Distance, and 5-km Race Performance. Int J Sports Physiol Perform. 2016;11(1):80-85. doi:10.1123/ijspp.2014-0559. https://journals.humankinetics.com/view/journals/ijspp/11/1/article-p80.xml
Kwon, Y. J., Park, S. J., Jefferson, J., & Kim, K. (2013). The effect of open and closed kinetic chain exercises on dynamic balance ability of normal healthy adults. Journal of physical therapy science, 25(6), 671-674. doi:10.1589/jpts.25.671. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3805008/
Svoboda, Z., Janura, M., Kutilek, P., & Janurova, E. (2016). Relationships Between Movements of the Lower Limb Joints and the Pelvis in Open and Closed Kinematic Chains During a Gait Cycle. Journal of Human Kinetics, 50. doi:10.1515/hukin-2015-0168.https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5260548/
Zifchock, B. A., Pratt, K., Brown, A., & Hillstrom, H. (2012). Knee kinematic coupling in males and females: open and closed-chain tasks. J Appl Biomech, 28(3), 291-296.https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21975529/
Graham, R. B., Costigan, P. A., Sadler, E. M., & Stevenson, J. M. (2011). Local dynamic stability of the lifting kinematic chain. Gait Posture, 34(4), 561-563. doi:10.1016/j.gaitpost.2011.06.022. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0966636211002190?via%3Dihub