Meet Our Virtual Service Providers
E x W is excited to partner with some highly skilled medical service providers to help keep our athletes running healthy! Keira and Felicia have both expanded their businesses to include virtual appointment sessions in order to support geographically-distributed athletes dealing with running injuries. Not only are virtual appointments valuable during these current uncertain times, but they can also be far more accessible to those of us who have busy schedules and find it difficult to make time to get into a local provider’s office. Check out each of their top 5 tips for runners below and contact your coach to schedule an appointment.
Keira Kenyon – Athletic Trainer
Kiera is the owner and founder of the movement wellness company – Movementality, LLC.
I am a licensed and certified athletic trainer with experience working with all levels of collegiate athletes. Over the course of my career, I have developed an interest and passion in the way people move and educating my clients as I work with them. I have since moved on from collegiate athletics and am helping active individuals challenge, express, and enjoy their lives through movement. Online sessions with me will be about 45 minutes to an hour long; during which I will take an in-depth look at the way you move, teach you self-mobilizations and soft-tissue work, and multi-joint strengthening and coordination training. I pride myself on taking a holistic approach and appreciate that injuries are more than a sum of physical limitations.
Keira’s 5 Secret Tips for Runners:
- Progressive overload will PREVENT injuries from happening in the first place. If you’re new to running, do not start by running 3 miles. Give yourself permission to start at the beginning and work your way up. Your body will thank you in the long run 😉
- Move in more ways than just forward. Overuse injuries occur when the same motion happens again, and again, and again without additional movement to supplement it. So whether this is playing with your kids, dancing in your kitchen, or purposeful exercises, make sure you move laterally, vertically, diagonally, and even get some rotation!
- Be barefoot. Society has gotten so used to going everywhere with shoes and socks on. Our feet need to feel varying surfaces to be challenged in order to become stronger. The easiest and most time efficient way to strengthen the foot is to just be barefoot as much as you can. Foot strength and coordination plays heavily into the prevention of injuries.
- If the thought of it scares you, do less, first. Our bodies react to the way we feel and interpret challenges. If the body senses something as threatening, we will tighten up and move less freely, creating changes in our biomechanics which lead to injury. Similar to progressive overload, do the small things first. I’m not telling you that you can’t go climb an insanely high mountain. But I am asking that you climb a couple of hills first.
- Mobility and flexibility are not the same thing. Flexibility is the ability to move a joint passively through it’s range of motion. Static stretching post-run is an awesome way to develop flexibility. Mobility is the ability to control a movement through a wide range of motion. Mobility work can be done pre-run as a warmup to get the muscles working. So, try a shin box movement pre-run, and a runner’s stretch post-run and see how your hips feel after.
Felicia Sciortino – Physical Therapist
Felicia is a physical therapist at Orthopaedics Plus located in Beverly, MA.
Hi! I am Felicia, a distance runner and physical therapist in Beverly, MA at Orthopaedics Plus. After graduating from Boston University’s Doctor of Physical Therapy program, I started working at OP treating a variety of injuries from low back pain to concussion, but I have always had a passion for treating and working with runners. This passion comes from personal experience with seemingly endless frustration from repeat injuries while I competed for BU’s D1 track and cross-country teams. Too much time being sidelined from competition kept me wondering if a day would come where injuries wouldn’t plague my training. It was not until my first year of PT school where I started filming my running form and understood why I kept getting stress fractures. This eventually led to my thesis on injury prevention via two-dimensional gait analysis. Fast-forward, now I am a practicing Physical Therapist, and through Limitless Running, I now have a means and program for treating runners and keeping them injury free.
Felicia’s Tips for Staying Injury-Free
- Stretch your hip flexors after every run – With how often people sit throughout the day, it’s no wonder nearly everyone I treat has tight hip flexors. But runners are especially prone to this. Part of the drive you need to get your leg to land in front of you requires your hip flexors shortening. If you go for a 7 mile run, that’s over 10,000 contractions of your hip flexors. That being said, stretching in general is important, but give your hip flexors some extra love and it goes a long way.
- Strengthen your gluteus medius – Your glute med has an important job to play in both running and walking. This muscle keeps your hips level every time your foot lands on the ground. For every 1 degree that your hip drops down, your risk of injury increases by 80%. Clam shells, side lying leg raises, side planks, and single leg steps downs are a few great ways to strengthen this VERY important muscle.
- Run softly – We did not evolve to run on concrete or pavement and despite what some running shoe companies will claim, your shoes don’t do a great job absorbing shock. We evolved to have our muscles and tendons absorb that shock for us. Running with the cue of “land softly” or “land quietly” helps engage those muscles and prevents you from relying too heavily on your 2 inch foam sole.
- Keep your cadence between 160-180 steps per minute – Cadence is one of the easiest ways to tweak your running from and decrease loading rates (the rate at which you load a muscle). Simply choose songs or pick a pre-set playlist that has your desired BPM and run to the beat. This helps you prevent overstriding and keeps your loading rates low.
- Core work is key – There are so many reasons to do core work, but most people gloss over the aspect of form. Try this: lay on your back with your arms at your sides and your legs straight up in the air. Lower your legs down together slowly until you feel your low back start to come off the ground. How far down did you get? The battle between your hip flexors pulling your lower back off the ground (again, more reason to stretch those hip flexors) and your core strength is constantly at play when you run. Keeping adequate trunk control gives you a foundation from which to move your legs.