Sarah Harradine (thatsquatbot), personal trainer and blogger, is here to talk you through a series of stretches to help you look after your everyday health and make the most of life, in partnership with Simplyhealth. They’re here to support you every step of the way, throughout your training, on event day and beyond.
Today we’re going to talk about stretches that could help reduce the risk or impact of some of the most common injuries. It’s important if you do become injured you take time out to recover properly. If your injury is persistent you should be seen by a professional or visit your GP.
Remember running injuries can often be caused by going too far, too fast, before your body is ready – every body is different but a good rule of thumb is to not increase your mileage more than 10% each week.
Seated shin stretch
If you're already suffering from shin splints, this stretch will help relieve and relax the tough-to-reach tightened area. Sit on to your knees, sit back so weight is onto your toes and you will feel a stretch in your shins.
This is a great way to target the shin muscles specifically and build strength there to help prevent shin splints. Sat with one leg extended, loop toe into a band, then lift toes to apply pressure until it’s felt in the shin.
Kneeling half squat
Knee issues in running can be caused by increasing your distance too fast, but it can also be caused by a tight groin area. This stretch will help loosen off the area and allow the knee to track correctly when running. Kneel on one knee with other leg outstretched, foot on floor. Extend the hips and squeeze the glute until you feel a stretch in the groin and inside thigh.
Plantar fasciitis is a very painful condition in the bottom of the foot, and can be caused by weak, tight muscles and tendons underfoot. This stretch helps release the tight area. Sit onto knees with toes tucked under. Sit back until you feel a stretch in your arch
Toe towel pick ups
A strong arch will help prevent plantar fasciitis. From a seated position, use your bare toes to pick up a tea towel, squeezing until you feel the arch of your foot engage. Repeat 10 times on each foot.