Triathlons are exhilarating, and more people are putting their time and energy in such endurance events. They are the ultimate test of endurance, stamina and physical prowess, made to push your body and mind to the limit.
Events like the Ironman competitions can be gruelling, where you are expected to swim, run and cycle during the course of over 200 kilometres, or even more. So naturally, an athlete has to be in the best shape to compete in triathlons while being able to sustain energy along the way.
Risk of Injury
It’s important for triathletes to understand the injury risks with such events so they can avoid and/or reduce the impact. Studies suggest that the injury risks are higher when competing in triathlons compared to swimming, running, or cycling alone/individually.
Injuries from running are more commonly reported, followed by cycling and swimming. There is greater stress on the whole body during the course of a triathlon as the limbs are constantly getting worked. High levels of activity over extended periods may lead to strains and/or tightness in the foot, ankle, knee, and lower back, which are reported as common areas of injury.
There are two types of risk factors:
Repetitive stress on the whole body may greatly affect performance and expose athletes to injuries. So with foot posture problems, there is a greater risk of lower body injuries in triathletes. For example, someone with a flatfoot posture may experience more stress and tightness in the lower body.
As the foot arch collapses, it produces an inward twist in the shin bone and thigh bone, which adds stress on the knees, hips, and the lower back. This causes compensatory movements that may lead to energy loss and muscle fatigue
In addition, extended periods of activities like running and cycling may lead to the development of conditions in the knees, hips, and/or the lower back. Because of excessive movements in the foot and ankle due to flat feet, the risk of twist and fall injuries is also greater.
Foot insoles can be beneficial in removing excess pressure from the feet caused by repeated foot strikes and minimising the impact of repetitive stress.
MASS4D® provides insoles that support your feet in the best posture at all times and reduce compensatory movements to conserve energy and reduce muscle fatigue.
MASS4D® provides the corrective support needed to produce the spring-like effect in the feet for optimal running stride with a healthy full body posture. In cycling, these insoles can help limit compensatory movements in the lower limbs to reduce muscle fatigue and energy loss for more stable and improved pedal strokes.
MASS4D® helps improve the distribution of weight and control excessive movements in the foot and ankle. This corrective support aids in promoting full body posture and improving athletic ability by helping restore optimal range of motion from the feet up.
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Reference: Migliorini, S. (2011) Risk factors and injury mechanism in Triathlon. Journal of Human Sport and Exercise: June 2011, Vol. 6, No. 2, pp. 309-314.
Reference: Burns, J., Keenan, A-M., Redmond, A. C. (2003) Factors Associated With Triathlon-Related Overuse Injuries. Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy: April 2003, Vol. 33, No. 4, pp. 177-184.
Pilates refers to a series of exercises that target the core – the abdomen, obliques, lower back, inner and outer thigh, and so on. The movements involved in pilates also help to improve flexibility and posture while promoting core stability.