Strengthen Your Ankles and Hips to Avoid Running Injuries
This short video works on strengthening the ankle and hips, which will help you avoid future knee or ankle injuries.
I have run a few 50k trail races, and the most common problems I see are ankle or knee injuries. Trail runners work the hips a bit more than people who run on roads. As they encounter twists, turns, or obstacles such as roots or rocks, trail runners have to react with lateral movement. But if the majority of your training is done on roads and clear paths, you have less opportunity to strengthen and stabilize the hips and ankles.
In the video, we begin by using the core to help stabilize and balance the body while working on ankle mobility. As you follow along with the video, challenge yourself to continue to lift your heels higher and lean into the balls of your feet. Lifting the heels fires up the tiny muscles surrounding your ankle, which will be a big help if you ever turn your ankle while running.
The movements in this video can be done before or after a run, and should be repeated several times a week.
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1. "All in the hips", Runners World, September, 2009.