Do these moves to equalise your running muscles
Good balance is essential for distance runners, according to Jay Dicharry, biomechanist and author of Anatomy for Runners (Skyhorse). Because running involves having one foot on the ground at a time, it’s important to be able to quickly stabilise your body. Balance is ‘about your ability to keep your body aligned in all three planes of motion,’ says Dicharry. Without that alignment, the forces produced by running can lead to injury. Because runners mostly move forward, Dicharry says they often fail to develop the stability necessary to balance joints in other planes of motion. These exercises, performed three times a week, target the non-dominant leg.
STAND AND LIFT
1. Stand on your non-dominant leg and lift the opposite foot forward as far as you can, keeping your leg straight. Pause, toes pointed up, then slowly lower the leg. 2. Now raise the dominant leg to the side, keeping your toes pointing forward and not to the side. Pause, then slowly lower the leg. 3. Lift your dominant leg behind you as far as you can. Pause for a moment before slowly lowering your leg. Repeat this cycle 10 times.
STAND AND PIVOT
Stand on one foot and pivot your body away from the side you are standing on. For example, stand on your right foot and hold up your left foot. Rotate your upper body and hips to the left. Twenty repetitions before a run will fire up the supporting muscles and 20 repetitions after a run will help build strength.
RESISTED STAND AND LIFT
A variation on the first move. Place both ankles inside an exercise band, around 20cm apart. Raise one foot slightly off the ground. Adjust your weight on the supporting foot so that it is evenly distributed between forefoot and heel. With your leg straight, move your raised foot forward ( A), back to centre, to the side ( B), back to centre, backward ( C), and back to centre. Continue for two minutes on each leg. Repeat twice on both legs.