Category Archives: 5km fun run

My 10k Journey #01

I’ve never considered myself a ‘proper’ runner, but in my time I have managed to plod my way round a few 10k routes. Plod is very much the right word. Running has never felt effortless or easy, but rather something I’ve managed to just about conquer.


That was until the 2015 Bristol 10k, where I was in such horrible pain and discomfort that I decided I really wasn’t a runner and so vowed never to run again. At several parts during the run I had to stop running and was reduced to an awful whimpering hobble, all the while clutching at the root of the pain, my left hip. After a little bit of walking the pain would subside enough for me to run another couple of kilometres before having to repeat the same whimper-hobble-hip hold.

To be fair, I really shouldn’t be too harsh on the Bristol 10k. My hip pain wasn’t it’s fault. It had been there though the other 10k events I’d done that year, steadily getting worse with each run, but then all too quickly forgotten in that post-run euphoria. Giving up running seemed to be the most obvious way to eradicate the pain. And it worked! For a while. Over the past six months the pain has returned when I’ve tried everyday things that never caused me any issues previously – walking moderate distances, gardening, even simply sitting sometimes left me with that all too familiar dull ache in my hip.

Determined to face my nemesis once again, I have signed up for the 2017 Bristol 10k and I want to do it without hobbling. In fact, I want to be able to walk, sit or just generally exist without that nagging pain. I’ve decided to be sensible and grown up this time around and rather than taking the ‘doing more exercise will surely make it better’ approach I’ve decided to get the problem sorted properly.

And so it was that I found myself in John’s clinic last week. After a few questions about my general health, activity and mobility he had me skipping with an imaginary rope to see how each of my legs performed. (At this point I should also mention that I purposely went for a very long walk the day before to make my hip bad – though I really needn’t have bothered as John was able to pinpoint the cause of the problem pretty quickly anyway). It came as no great surprise to me that my left leg didn’t feel anywhere near as stable as my right. Onto the couch and again my left leg continued to be the poor relation when it came to mobility and strength. The most fascinating part for me was seeing how much weaker my left big toe was than my right – it was as if I had absolutely no control over it!

As the consultation continued it became clear that the problem was not actually in the hip itself, but rather in my back, which was causing me to compensate through other parts of my body and thus causing the pain in my hip. John then taught me how to stand properly. At 34 years old, I have finally learned how to stand in a way that doesn’t cause my back to ache – how have I never worked this out for myself?! John also did a little bit of cracking of my back, which led to an immediate improvement in the mobility and strength of my left leg. Clever stuff.

My homework for the week was to practise standing properly. Apparently I tend to stand ‘like a ballerina’, which might look great but actually does nothing good for my back and shoulders. So this week I have been learning to stand like a ski-jumper. I’m delighted to say it’s definitely making a difference. My hip hasn’t been achy, and I’m far more aware of how I’m holding myself and definitely feel less tension in my shoulders. I know this is only the first part of correcting a lifetime of bad habits, but I’m already encouraged by the results.

Knee pain not from bad knees #02

Knee pain…not from bad knees:

After practicing dynamic sitting I found out in my session today there is still lots to learn. Engaging the right shoulder muscles, moving my neck back, sitting on my sitbones…

We started with lots of stretching on the neck. For a 22 year old my neck is uncommonly tight, but re-attempting dynamic sitting seemed to make me much less stiff.

My new homework on top of dynamic sitting is to practice stretching my neck- chin to chest, while resting my head on some books. Lots of fun to be had!

picture of:Physiotherapy Hands on Treatment

Knee pain not from bad knees #01

Knee pain…not from bad knees: Assessment

For my first session physio went above and beyond. After feeling knee pain for over 6 months I was feeling anxious and disheartened that either there was no solution or the pain was all in my head. When having previously seen another Physio I was given routine knee stretches or was not taken seriously.

What was surprising to find out after extensive assessment from John is that my knee problem is not just about my knees but my neck, shoulders and feet. After seeing photos of my posture I was sadly reminded of a sloth. With just a few minutes sitting in dynamic pose already my body was responding, even with my toes were stronger.

We finished the session with looking at my car seat which needs towels and cushions to give the right support. My homework is to practice good posture and chair analysis- interesting homework for a knee problem!

Hi – Your’re ready to BLOG

Hi – Your’re ready to BLOG

1/ Please change your password to something more memorable to yourself.

2/ This interface works just like Word you can cut and paste form else where. Upload photos and when you get more adventurous video clips and teaching materials.

3/ To help others find you posts they are tagged with keywords and sluggs

4/ Title – its good to write a series which staying in order. E.g:
Ankle Pain No.01 – Week 1 – See the Physio
Ankle Pain No.02 – Week 2 – Rehab Advice
Ankle Pain No.03 – Week 3 – Getting better!!
Ankle Pain No.04 – Week 4 – Race Day  Smashed it!!!!!  🙂


Rehab the body – not the injury!

Picture showing - London Marathon Finishers Medal 2013
London Marathon Finishers Medal 2013

Speaking at the recent Physiotherapists in Sports conference, former Olympic USA coach Vern Gambetta called on delegates to consider the whole body and the brain when treating patients. ‘If it hurts, we look for where it hurts, and we rehab the hell out of that, and leave the rest of it,’ he said.

‘You can see a lot by watching’ – Gambetta said, ‘We miss what we don’t see. Sometimes it’s as simple as watching someone from all sides.’

This approach resonates and underpins everything we do in the AAA-Physio clinic at Moti – Which is why we get great results!
So if your are stuck in a loop of; injury – rest – re-injury and can’t see a way out. Book some expert help from the Therapy Team at Moti

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Major ankle sprain #3 – Physio Homework week 2

So this week I haven’t been able to make it to the gym as frequently as I’d have liked- a grand total of twice! It was a busy weekend and the summer evenings have lead themsleves to social events that have taken me away from the treadmill!

However, I have taken John’s advice and am now walking to work in my trainers! Never thought I would be that person! Head held high, conscious of my posture and sporting sensible walking shoes. I haven’t quite got as far as buying a lightweight backpack yet but I have emptied my work bag of unnecessary books and now its MUCH lighter! I have used the walk up and down St Michael’s hill as a huge part of my therapy this week and doing the neural flossing on the floor at home- much to my boyfriend’s bemusement! I hope its enough!

Ankle-wise no swelling or recurrence of pain. The early morning stretch is still an issue but seems to be only in that first instance. Thursday- the day after physio my ankle was a little dodgy but I guess that was to be expected. And no balloon-fest style hill walking this weekend to cause troubles like last week! Lets hope I’ve done enough this week to see a bit of improvement!

Really hope that soon John will say I am strong enough to return to exercise classes as the four walls of the gym are making me stir crazy and aren’t helping my attendance records!

Major ankle sprain #2 – Physio Homework- week 1

So, being the good patient I am- I have been doing my moderate cardio activity with intermittent neural flossing! (whatever that may be!). So far this week I’ve been to the gym twice and based my cardio activity sat down, keeping an eye on my posture. The neural flossing exercises have been OK and aren’t painful or anything. I seem to be able to last longer on the cardio machines so maybe it is doing something!! At work I’ve been really conscious of my poor posture. I stoop, stand on one leg, cross my legs, and my ergonomics are enough to cause a physio to collapse! Definitely a work in progress! There’s been no serious swelling of my ankle but still very painful in the morning! I’ll keep doing as John said and see the results on Wednesday!!!

No1 – Marathon prep 2012 – Fixing my knee pain

runner on treadmill 12km
Running Analysis prior to Marathon Training

Getting my Marathon training right in 2012!
I saw John at Moti for my 2nd physio appointment on 02/01/12 at MOTI. I first visited him before Christmas regarding an annoying pain in my right knee that I was worried might develop in to runners knee which I have had previously a few years back. My aim this year is to get a marathon pb (sub 3:40) at London. Last year I got struck down by sciatica mid way through my training and so did not make it to the start line. I decided to visit a physio to try and combat some of the reoccurring injuries I have kept getting on the right side of my body. I have been a regular visitor of Moti clinic for sports massage over the last year so decided to book a physio appointment with John through them.

Assessment with Physio
At my first two appointments with John he spent time going through my history of injuries, my performance in running and assessing my injury. In terms of toe to floor contact my right foot only scored 1/5 whereas as my left foot score 3/5. The general extension and abduction of right leg was also very poor.

Physio Treatment
John used various mobilization and manipulation techniques to increase my range of movement. I was surprised to see how just how much this improved my range of movement. After this treatment my right foot score had improved to 3/5.  At the end of the second visit a video analysis of my running style was carried out. Looking at the video above you can see how I rotate rightwards as I run. It almost looks as if I am dancing rather than running! Running like this instead of in a smooth forwards movement means I am wasting a lot of unnecessary energy. This is something we will be working at future appointments with the hope of clipping of some time from race performances.

The Plan!
In the meantime I will try and work on keeping an upright posture and driving my arms back while I am running. I will also continue doing core exercises and opting for more exercises that are in an upright position (like running) which John told me research is starting to show is more effective.