Friday, 21 December 2007

1000 mile 'service'

Since coming back to running in 2003 I've been fortunate to work with two excellent physiotherapists who know runners inside out. Mark Buckingham opened my eyes to how a top physio works with high level athletes. His experience as a team physio at 2 Olympic Games has been invaluable in keeping me healthy. And more recently I have been able to work at the Parade Physiotherapy practice in Bath with Claire Wheller who also works with the walks squad and junior teams at UK Athletics. Its no coincidence that with regular visits to Mark and Claire i've been essentially healthy for 4 years now.

So on wednesday I was in Claire's clinic to get checked over and straightened out. Invariably there is some mis-alignment of hips/pelvis/back which needs correcting. Nothing serious but if left unattended it will gradually cause problems as the training miles stack up. Its no different than driving your car if the suspension is slightly out of alignment - you quickly find that a tyre wears out unevenly ! And actually the body is in many ways like a car. You service your car regularly to ensure that it runs trouble free when you need it. So why do we ignore our bodies until they breakdown, invariably at the least convenient time like before a major competition !

If there is one thing I have learnt from Mark and Claire it is that regular preventative treatment is better
(and cheaper in the long run) then waiting for injury to strike.

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