For a while now I've been seeing asymmetries and imbalances in my own body and everyone elses as well, both on a macro and micro scale, almost to a point where I wish I could shut it off at times. It has come with the body awareness I've been honing and training with since 2004. The photos below show the change I've seen in my body as a result of my functional performance training I began in 2004. Since then I have not had a single chronic injury and my times have dropped significantly. Coincidence, I think not. The photo on the left is from the 1999 ITU World Championships in Montreal, Canada. I ran a 39:30 10K, won the silver medal in my age-group and was 5th amateur overall. The photo on the right is from a triathlon in 2005. I ran 37:00 for my 10K off the bike.
I've also been, from time to time, looking at elite running race photos and putting "bets" on who won the race based solely on the degree of asymmetry. My guesses have been right 100% of the time.
Here is a photo from one of the most riveting and memorable race finishes from the sport of triathlon this year. You may have seen it already. Six of the best runners on the planet in the sport of triathlon vying for one of the world's largest prize purses in the sport this past June.
Can you guess who won the race below, if you don't already know?
It's been said before, I'll say it again. Find cause and effect where others find coincidence.
The athlete running in the straightest line (linearly and laterally), Simon Whitfield of Canada, won. Coincidence? I think not. Nor do I believe it is a coincidence that Kahlefeldt (AUS) was second.
Kris Gemmell (NZL) made a comment on the photo about that being the last time he loses by a bird's pecker (or some similar kiwi colloquialism.) Kris - I'm curious to know what you're working on to close that gap...I know you can!
It is, of course, one thing to point out what is wrong and another thing to point out why its wrong and offer solid solutions to correct it. Dr. Joe Torg has been considered a top authority on running injuries as the co-author of the book, The Running Athlete, the definitive radiographic analysis of every conceivable running injury. He can tell you, with utmost precision what part of the body is injured. He is also quoted as telling Christopher McDougall, author of Born to Run, who wanted to run longer than 2-3 miles at a time without pain that, "The body is not designed for that kind of abuse." [Excerpts from Born To Run by McDougall.]
Times are changing. Be a part of it!! Form and function are taking the spotlight. Injuries are not something to cope with but to avoid with specific actionable steps. There are elements to performance that many athletes have yet to take into consideration in their efforts, greatly minimizing their ability to tap into their true performance potential.
Whether for injury resistance or performance, the same principles apply. But you've gotta understand them and apply them day to day for yourself. Eliminate the guess work and implement a strategic, time efficient, performance maximizing plan and you'll be able to replace unnecessary injuries and unnecessary pain with fun long lasting memories for a really long time.
MovementU was created for this purpose...change is in the air : )