Monday, February 20, 2012

How to Avoid Injuries: Tips from the Guardian

Last year the Guardian announced that its strategy was to put digital first and it is interesting to see how their digital products take on a life of their own, especially the website. For some time it has not been just an electronic version of the printed page, for example breaking news and live blogging, videos, podcast, and links have been around for some time. What I hadn't realised though was the way they also use the fact that there are no physical constraints on length online to run expanded versions of the printed articles.
Today there was an article on how to avoid running injuries by Sarah Phillips and it is fascinating to see how it was subbed to fit the space. The paper has 950 words but this only represents only 40% of the full online article.
So what has been left out? Some people didn't make the cut at all: 2 elite athletes (Ben Moreau and Benedict Whitby), Dr Joanna Scurr a biomechanics expert, and Boris Bozhinov a gait analyst. All of them had interesting things to say and I might have made a different choice but something had to go and there is no overwhelming reason to choose one tip over another. However I do regret a paragraph from Ben Moreau was cut:
"Most injuries come from the fact that the body isn't ready for it yet. All of a sudden people start hammering themselves, getting really into it at the beginning, and the injuries come from there. I would tell people to build up their training really slowly, and don't feel that every week has to be their best ever. If you build up for a couple of weeks then have an easy week, that allows the body to recover and cope with the extra stress, then slowly start to build again."
I believe most injuries are caused by training errors in trying to drive yourself too hard (and not heel striking as is suggested by Dean Karnazes). This was the clearest warning of that.
Overall though I feel the article is full of good tips on what I think is the most important running subject. Being able to run fundamental everything else is just trying to make the best of that ability.

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