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5 November 2011

A Pain in the Hip

About three weeks ago I suffered a major setback to my plans to run a PR in the marathon and make the cutoff to qualify for Boston 2013. A pain in my hip began as a dull ache and resulted in some pretty severe tightness. Now, three weeks later I’ve decided to drop out of […]

About three weeks ago I suffered a major setback to my plans to run a PR in the marathon and make the cutoff to qualify for Boston 2013. A pain in my hip began as a dull ache and resulted in some pretty severe tightness. Now, three weeks later I’ve decided to drop out of the marathon (I’m running the half instead), and I’ve missed out on over 100km of training.

I went to a local Chiropractor who also does Active Release Techniques and have been getting ART done a couple times a week. I have to say that it’s been an amazing help to alleviating the tightness in my hip. The issues seem to lie in a weak gluteus medius (glut med) resulting in some tensor fascia lata (TFL), quadrates lumborum (QL) and ilio-tibial band (ITB) tightness. ITB syndrome is common in runners, and is easily treated.

I decided that taking it easy, changing my schedule and foregoing the marathon was the best way to ensure that I could continue distance running for the long-haul and avoid serious setbacks and more permanent damage. I also wanted no part of aggravating my back again (I’ve been out of commission for several weeks a couple of times due to inflammation of disc herniation – very unpleasant). Armed with a great doctor who had a treatment plan, some drastic changes to my training schedule and a great new stretching routine I feel like I’m well on the road to recovery. In the past few weeks I’ve done little running other than a 1/2 marathon a couple weeks ago, a 5k trail race last weekend, and I’ll be doing the 1/2 marathon this weekend at the Hamilton Marathon (Road2Hope).

Here are some of the stretches that have been helping me. If you have hip pain when you run, maybe they’ll be a help to you as well:

Active Fig. 4 Knee to Chest – Supine

Reps: 3x
Hold: 30 sec.
Frequency: 1-2x/day

Lying on back, knees bent with feet flat on the floor. Cross one ankle onto opposite knee. Hug around both legs and bring up toward chest (to comfort). Gently push outer knee into elbow and hold. Relax and hug both legs closer to chest. Hold, relax, and repeat.

Fig. 4 Knee to Chest

Reps: 3x
Hold: 30 sec.
Frequency: 1-2x/day

Lying on back, knees bent with feet flat on the floor. Cross one ankle onto opposite knee. Bring knee (that is under the ankle) straight up towards the same side shoulder to feel a stretch in the buttocks.

Hip Flexors – Bench

Reps: 3x
Hold: 30 sec.
Frequency: 1-2x/day

Place shin along bed or bench and bend front stabilizing knee to assume a lunge position. Keeping upper body square, bend front knee and perform a pelvic tilt to feel a stretch in the thigh of the trailing leg. Can hold on to a chair or the wall for stability.

TFL Standing

Reps: 3x
Hold: 30 sec.
Frequency: 1-2x/day

Stand approximately 2 feet from a wall with one hip facing the wall (or chair for support). Cross foot furthest from wall over in front of opposite foot. Bend the knee of the leg that is in front, and keep the back leg straight. Lean hip into wall, and lean upper body away to feel a stretch in the side of the hip closest to the wall.

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