Preventing Injuries During Lockdown

 20 August 2021

Person holding knee after injury
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Article written by Naomi Rands, Personal Trainer at Active Monash

Lockdowns have seen a huge increase in the number of people taking up running and cycling as their main form of exercise.

While both exercises are fantastic for our physical and mental health, we need to make sure that our bodies are strong enough to sustain the extra force it brings.

When running, our knees and other joints are generally under forces of around 3-5X our body weight with every stride. Different muscles are also under a huge amount of pressure, which means we need to make sure the muscles are strong enough to withstand this force to prevent pesky injuries. Here is a fantastic podcast that discusses this in more detail.

Strength training for running doesn’t need to be complicated. Running with good form requires strong glutes, hamstrings, quadriceps, core and calves. Due to our generally sedentary lifestyles sitting at desks, it is common to have weak glutes and hamstrings and weak, tight hip flexors.

Start by trying to add in the exercises below 2-3X a week.

  • Single leg glute bridge - 15 reps X 3 each side
  • Resistance band crab walk - 15 repes X 3 each direction
  • Arabesque - 10 reps X 3 each side
  • Single leg squat - 10 reps X 3 each side
  • Single leg calf raises - 15 reps X 3 each side
  • Deadbug - 14 reps X 3
  • Side raise hold - 30sec holds X 3 each side

Another factor we need to consider is the rate at which we build up our mileage and intensity. If you do too much, too quickly, you will also likely end up injured.

As a general rule, aim to increase mileage by no more than 10% each week. This can vary depending on how much running you have done in the past and how easy/hard you are running.

Aim to add volume gradually before slowly increasing intensity. Try to avoid building volume and intensity at the same time.

Some other things to consider when ramping up your running is how much sleep you are getting and making sure you eat enough of the right foods to help your body adapt and recover.