Dr Gary Smith
I recently attended the Sports Chiropractic Association (SCA) Strength and Conditioning Conference in Sydney, and had the privilege of listening to David Joyce’s presentation titled “The Calf – from Ping to Performance”.
David is head of Athletic Performance with the Greater Western Sydney Giants AFL team, and in his discussion he outlined the following points in relation to the role of the calf muscle for all runners:
The fastest runners don’t have big calves, but they do have big, powerful glutes
The calf acts as ‘ballast’- a stable platform for a rapidly shortening Achilles tendon
The calf accounts for 10-15% of all soft tissue injuries on the body
To prevent injury and improve performance, runners need to develop the capacity, force and speed of the calf/ Achilles complex
No single calf strengthening program will satisfy the demands of all athletic endeavours – it needs to be tailored to the specific demands/ loads the athlete is subjected to
The calf/Achilles complex can be prone to injury. Trained well, they become an extremely efficient, high-tensile spring capable of propelling the runner forward with great efficiency.
For more information on the calf, running or athletic performance in general, please be in touch with me at the clinic.
For those with an interest in Strength and Conditioning (SC) for running, why not come along to Hunter Healthy Spines free presentation at Organic Feast, 10th September at 7pm – contact us to secure your seat.