The New Forest Runners Junior Group takes injury prevention seriously. We have experienced junior coaches trained in first aid and junior injuries and have access to doctors, physios and experts from England Athletics.
If you think you are injured please:
- DO NOT IGNORE IT.
- Phone the junior coach and discuss your injury.
- Do not turn up injured expecting a training session. Placing stress on an injury, no matter how small will exacerabate the injury. It will take longer to heal. The coaches will simply ask you to sit out the session, focusing on stretching mobilisation.
- Follow all coach/physio/doctor advice and observe the recovery time, perform the rehab exercises and do not attempt to rush back into training.
- Use the rehab time productively looking at core strength, strength, flexibility and form. This will probably improve your running far more than a couple of high risk training sessions.
Apart from the obvious "running into tree/dog/mate" injury, many others are due to natural changes during fast growth, faults in running form or an incorrect training schedule. While Doctors/Physios can & should treat the symptoms, you need to look more strategically at why the injury occured in the first place.
If you think you are injured contact Richard ASAP. He wil advise on rest and recovery times, rehabilitation strength and mobility exercises, video/diagnose your running form and which doctors/physios to consult to treat the injury.
Running related injuries in both juniors and adults are primarily due to the following causes:
- Excessive increase in training
- Excessive volume of training over a long time period
- Incorrect warm up, mobility, cool down and stretching during training
- Lack of muscular conditioning and strength training to support the running activity.
In addition, juniors have additional issues to consider.
- Growth related injuries. Skeletal growth occurs much faster than muscle growth. The end result can be excessive stretching on the muscle and where the tendon attaches to the bone. This is similar to an taut elastic band. The additional impulses placed on the body during high power training can cause injury. In our experience such a phase lasts for 3-6 months, re-occuring over 2-3 years.
- Coordination injuries. During rapid growth, the arms and legs become longer, heavier and more mucle bound. The learnt movements of a child aged 10 will have a very different effect on a growing teenager, hence the inappropriate phrase 'clumsy teenager' - this is just an observation that the child is growing fast and needs to re-train their movement skills for this changing body.
- Incorrect nutrition and fueling. A difficult subject, given the two extremes presented by the media. We need a fit and heathly body to train, that can handle the training stress and adapt overnight. Our approach is to have a conversation, with both individual and in groups, with both junior and parent about nutrition and how we use this to improve training.