Every athlete whether they be Olympic or leisurely will have some level of imperfection in their anatomy or biomechanics, what matters is whether this imperfection puts you at risk of injury. Before starting any training for a big event or increasing level of intensity for personal gain, I’d recommend seeking professional advice on your positioning, technique and level of progression.
What examples do you have?
Depending on the training being undergone would depend on what corrections may be needed to look into. With a gym trainer for example we could assess the squat technique and possibly find the individual is leaning too far forward, putting their back at more risk than necessary. A runner may stride too far in their steps which could overload the joints, leading to more risk of injury. Ultimately all these are avoidable with the right intervention and advice.
Other than positioning, there is also a literal weakness in a muscle group that can lead to the imbalance in training, let’s use the hamstrings as an example; If a cyclist has weak hamstrings on a 20 mile ride, that could lead to overuse in the glutes, or a potential strain in the hamstrings from fatigue. Every muscle plays a part in training and if neglected, will throw everything off kilter.
How would you fix it?
So once we identify the potential imbalance, remembering that not all can be problematic, we can then begin a programme to prevent any issues flagging up in future. A lot of the time it would be based on re-education during the chosen exercise and trying to work out of bad habits which can be tough on its own, but with perseverance can be achieved. In my line of work, I tend to see a lot of runners so naturally I want to check for any imbalances in their running style. Giving them not only tips on what to focus on during running (which of course puts a lot of responsibility on the runner) but also exercises on a daily basis to aid that correction would be the normal protocol. The biggest problem in the past I’ve found with that, is the need to focus on every run remembering what needs doing. In some instances, there are no regular injuries and it’s possible the runner has had the same style for years in which case there’s not a need to change it. If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it! It’s only when there’s a reoccurring injury that something needs to be addressed. This of course also goes for gym training, swimming, cycling and any other repetitive exercise also.
Albeit a small article, I hope it’s planted the idea into some of you that may keep dealing with the same injury flaring up every couple of months. Get your positioning and strength checked over and find the source of that problem.