Rolfing & Running: Healing Injuries

What has 26 bones, 56 ligaments, 38 muscles and 3 arches on each side?  Yes, it’s your foot! Feet are generally well equipped for walking and running. Personally, I only run when I’m being chased, but I have many clients who run for fun & for its physical benefits.

Historically, running was necessary for our ancestors to obtain food as well as to avoid becoming someone else’s food.  Today, tribes such as the Mexican Tarahumara Indians wear simple shoes fashioned from car tires and are able to cover 400 miles over several days.

Imagine running 2-10 miles a few times a week with absolutely no pain. Has this been your experience?

Running Injuries

Running injuries are common and often keep us off the road. Foot injuries often associated with running include heel spurs, plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendonitis.  With each of these problems, pain & inflammation signal that the foot is not working well.

Runner's Heal Cord Pain

Runner’s Heal Cord Pain

In running, the foot makes thousands of subtle adjustments as we move through the many phases of gait.  Optimally the impact of running is evenly distributed amongst the bones, ligaments and muscles of each foot. The arches of the feet work as shock absorbers.  Healthy feet provide a foundation of support for the body to function well within the gravitational field.

Foot injuries and pain often cause rigidity within the body.  Long after the initial wound has healed, the stiffness remains and can take residence in the structure.  Constrictions within the foot can travel upwards and set the stage for secondary problems such as back pain.

How does Rolfing help?

Rolfers work to create a balance of tension throughout the structure, restore elasticity to the tissue and improve the overall biomechanics.  As the mobility and alignment of the foot and ankle improve, the entire body becomes more resilient.

When these structural issues are sorted out, you can actually run without pain and with increased efficiency. This leads to better timing, fewer injuries and generally more enjoyment while running.

“A man’s tracks tell quite a Runner_maintrue story. They inform quietly about ankles and knees, but they shout the news about hips and pelvis. If one foot is consistently exerted [tilted onto its inner edge], the ankle, the knee, or, perhaps more likely, the entire pelvic basin is rotated.”- Ida P. Rolf

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