For Christmas this year I wouldn’t say my stocking was exactly very full…but I promise that wasn’t because my mum and step-dad were being particularly mean. Fortunately, I was given an experience at the Stride Uk Lab down in Brighton: and so I’m excited to tell you guys about it. Let’s begin.
What was the Stride UK experience like?
Firstly, I got to do what all runners love to do: talk about themselves. As you can expect, this was great. I mean, I didn’t even have to slip it casually into the conversation, I just got to talk and talk all about me! And obviously, you couldn’t ask for a more interesting conversation that that.
Anyway, so I would have been completely fine just leaving after describing my training, niggles, yoga, life, you name it, to the sports-science expert (called Matt), but after this we quickly started the strength and flexibility tests. Now these weren’t specific tests with unit measures, but were based on Matt’s judgement which was very, very perceptive. We quickly realised through one legged squats and numerous other tests that one leg was slightly weaker than the other.
Moving on, we then went into the treadmill room for the remainder of the session. Here, I ran barefoot and with trainers, backwards and forwards, and my previous pairs of footwear (which I brought along) were also analysed. After this, we then had a lengthy and in-depth conversation about the efficiency of my running style, what I need to work on, specific sessions to include, cadence training, additional measures and more. I would have honestly never thought to pick up on some of the issues that came up.
That concluded the 2.5 hour session, and once finished we collected the memory stick (with all the analysis videos) and went off for a meal at Pizza Express.
One of the best bits is that sometime over the next few days I’ll be receiving an email with a strengthening programme, cadence programme, links to running software to download, and more advice on basically everything!!!
What did I learn?
Well, it’s safe to say that I learned way too much to explain on here, and I have a sneaking suspicion that you probably don’t really care that much, so I’ll just keep it brief. Basically my cadence is too low, which is causing me spending too long on each foot, resulting in my hips sinking downwards, and causing the rest of my body to fall out of line. There is also a lot of variation in leg strength which needs to be corrected. I’ve been given specific training programmes to sort this out I would have honestly never thought that my foot problem, and also my general running style, was caused by this!
Would I recommend it?
Yes! Well in most cases. If you’ve been suffering a persistent injury it’s a must…or any injury for that matter.
And if you haven’t been injured but are looking to gain an extra edge on your competitors, I would also recommend giving it a go. Matt’s knowledge was incredible, and even though i’m not injured at the moment, I know my analysis will help keep me healthy and also see me grow into a better athlete in the future.
Many myths and less-qualified people’s advice were debunked and I was also given some good advice on trainers: aka stick with what you’re comfortable in!
In total we spent a good half an hour on the technique testing, about 25 minutes on the treadmill, and then the rest of the time was spent going through strategies and weaknesses. I also found out that professionals such as Elisabet Barnes (Marathon Des Sables 2015 winner), and other GB athletes have used the services, along with James Cracknell!
You can visit the Stride UK website and have a look yourself!
Just a little catch-up
Last week was a guest-post by Anna (you can read it here or read my work on her blog here), so I thought I’d give you a super-quick run down of what I’ve been up to.
Last Saturday I ran 18.43 at the Maidstone Parkrun (only 12 seconds away from my PB), and have continued normal training since then…apart from on Thursday. As you all know, the weather was atrocious, and so we had to abandon the track session half way through due to rain, snow, ankle-deep rivers on the track…however my school was shut on the Friday after so I wasn’t too upset. My braces were also taken off!!!
I hope you have all had a lovely week and are looking forward to the next!
Originally published on TeenRunnerRecommend0 recommendationsPublished in