physical therapist

6 Ways a Physical Therapist Can Enhance Your Running Performance

If you are an aspiring runner

…create a custom training program with your physical therapist

…take care of your body with professional training and nutrition advice

…listen to your physical therapist to prevent injuries

There’s more to running than lacing up your sneakers and hitting the pavement. If you are a serious runner, you will always be working towards your next goal and striving to improve your performance.

Unfortunately, this quest to become a better runner becomes counterproductive when you push yourself too hard and neglect training best practices. To get the most out of your running training, and meet your goals without injury, work with a knowledgeable sports physical therapist.

Here are six ways a physical therapist can help you achieve your running goals safely and efficiently.

#1. They personalize your training

Every runner needs a different training program to meet their goals. What works for your running buddy, teammate, or favorite Instagram runner won’t necessarily work for you.

Sports physical therapists understand the mechanics of the body in motion and how those mechanics work with your unique physique when you run. This information allows them to make suggestions to improve your technique and prevent injuries from poor form.

Together, you can make a training plan tailored to you that includes correct warm-up and cool-down stretches, strengthening exercises, mileage periodization, a training schedule, and more.

#2. They keep you on your toes

It’s easy to get into a training rut, but doing the same thing repeatedly doesn’t strengthen and condition your body for better performance. In fact, it can cause repetitive strain injuries.

A physical therapist won’t let you settle for the status quo. They’ll coach you through run training variation methods such as Fartlek training, tempo runs, varying speeds, and varied interval training. As soon as you’ve mastered something, they’ll throw something new at you to help you become a more accomplished runner.

#3. They don’t overlook soft tissues

Every runner knows they need healthy bones, muscles, heart, and lungs for excellent running. But other body parts can slow you down if they get neglected.

Physical therapists keep your entire body in mind as they help you train. Running can strain and damage soft tissue like small muscles, tendons, ligaments, and nerves. An expert sports physical therapist can perform soft tissue treatments to relieve swelling and pain in these areas and increase functionality for better running.

#4. They can find you a nutritionist

As a runner, you need fuel for your body. A balanced diet of wholesome foods gives you the energy and nutrients you need for peak performance.

Your physical therapist probably doesn’t specialize in nutrition, but they know someone who does. They can refer you to a nutritionist they trust to create a custom diet that supports a healthy, active body. With the right nutrition, you will have more strength and endurance for training and competing.

#5. They make you slow down

Everyone needs a break, and your physical therapist knows when it’s time for one. If you rush into training for an event too soon after competing in the previous one, you can severely stress your body.

A physical therapist will guide you through the deloading phase to relieve that stress before you start training again. This is vital for preserving all of your progress and not sliding back due to an injury.

#6. They protect you from injuries

Far too often, runners don’t visit a physical therapist until after they’ve suffered an injury. If only they knew everything we’ve already discussed about how physical therapists help athletes prevent injuries!

Every runner suffers an injury at some point, but serious injuries due to inadequate training can keep you off the track for an entire season. Why not work with a physical therapist preemptively to prevent a debilitating injury before you require running rehabilitation services?

For many of the best runners, a trusted sports physical therapist is their secret weapon to improving their running and achieving their goals. Whatever you need to be the best runner you can be, a reputable physical therapist can do it for you.

True Sports Physical Therapy – Where Maryland Athletes Rehab

At True Sports, we’re sports-focused because you’re sports-focused. The best physical therapists in Baltimore and Maryland provide the highest level of sports physical therapy and expertise you need to get back to your sport. With six convenient state-of-the-art locations to choose from, any athlete who takes their rehab seriously can get awesome care and extraordinary results. Select your location and schedule an appointment and have True Sports get you back to your team. For questions about insurance or self-pay rates, please call our office at 1-401-946-1672.

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