The Runners Edge

Are you a runner that’s wanting to improve your running performance and improve speed? If you aren’t incorporating Resistance and strength training in your preparation, you could be stunting your performance and increasing your risk of overuse injury.

Strength training is an important, yet commonly overlooked, component to running performance.  The research to support strength and resistance training in running athletes is growing as a means of injury reduction and prevention and even performance enhancement.

A recent review examined the effects of strength training on the performance of middle and long-distance runners.  After analysing 24 articles the authors of the systematic review agreed that Strength Training on 2–3 occasions per week is likely to positively affect performance by improving:

  • Running economy (improvements of 2-8%).

  • Time trial performance (average reduction of 2-5% of total time).

Strength training not only improves performance but is also is a valuable tool in reducing the risk of overuse injuries in the athletic population. 

Strength training is effective in developing robust athletes, as to improve tissue tolerance and improve biomechanics of performance.  A systematic review of randomised control trials into the effectiveness of exercise interventions in the prevention of sporting injuries discovered that strength training reduced sports injuries to less than half and overuse injuries could almost be halved.

If running economy and injury prevention is important to you, then you should definitely consider introducing strength based resistance training into your running preparation.  To find out the best way to improve your strength and conditioning, book an appointment with one of our experienced Physiotherapists here at Medwest Health Care and shave minutes of your PB’s!