Releasing ankles

I'm almost sick of talking about my shin splints injury that I am promising myself I won't write about it again. After this blog anyway.

I was out on a little run near home when I became disheartened that I was feeling that all too familiar tension in my shins again. I cursed silently. I was furious because it was evident that I was still doing something wrong when I've tried so hard to get it right.

Giving my feet and calves a break
Rewind to Christmas last year, when my aunt lent me some books on the Alexander Technique, which she says pretty much saved her life. I'm guilty of letting these books gather dust on my shelf for the past few months, but there was one thing that came to mind on this run that I wanted to try there and then.

As I tentatively carried on running, I thought about those books and the chapters on releasing pain. I was storing something up in those blasted lower legs of mine and I had to let it go. I also thought about the end of my yoga sessions, when I relax into Corpse pose (not as morbid as it sounds) and focus on dissolving muscle tension.

Welcome to floppy-lower-leg-running. Because that's pretty much what I did. Combining what I vaguely remembered in those Alexander books and my own yoga techniques, I visualised everything below my knee hanging lightly on a piece of string.

Straight away I realised that even though I was trying my best at a mid-foot landing, I was still powering my feet and calves up to move me forward.

Now it was my thighs doing the work, which really is not a bad thing. God help me they need it.

The pain faded instantly as I continued to keep my feet loose and imagined all tension below my knees melting away into the ground.

I kept at this until I finished my run and, I have to say, what a brilliant discovery.


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