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Critical Quality 1–Resist Injury | Boddicker Performance

Filed under: Running, strength training

Critical Quality 1–Resist Injury

by on Sep 28th, 2010

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The first, and perhaps most vital, critical quality for the distance runner is the ability to resist injury.  Said another way, the training program of the successful distance athlete is set up in such a way that it encourages consistency in training.  Ask nearly any successful distance runner what his secret was following a performance breakthrough, and I’d be willing to bet “consistent training” is one of the first things that pops into mind.  This makes sense as the athlete is able to maintain an intelligent cyclic implementation of stimulation, adaptation, stabilization, and ultimately actualization that encourages the appropriate development of morpho-functional changes that ultimately lets the athlete run faster, longer without accumulation of metabolic wastes and changes in local pH.

A properly designed and implemented athletic development program should enhance an athlete’s injury resistance multilaterally.  A number of mechanical patterns have been associated with soft tissue injuries from the big toe to the cervical spine that may be mitigated with a proper, movement-based program.  While mechanical is not the only consideration in injury occurrence, it certainly should not be ignored.  Appropriate “core” training may be useful in limiting incidence of lower extremity injury (Hruska, 1997; Leetun, 2004).

Appropriate strength training also may improve the loading tolerance of specific tissues and improve the strength of connective tissues (Guilhem, 2010).  Bone strength index, and a resultant resistance to stress fractures in the lower extremity, seems to be directly related to neuromuscular performance variables (Rantalainen, 2008).  The ability to maintain reactive ability is also an important and modifiable component that may help the athlete resist injury from strain shifting from active to passive restraints (James, 2006).

The ability to resist injury is certainly a priority and a probability with an appropriately designed athletic development program.


Carson Boddicker

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