Running Gait Re-Training

What is RGR?

Running is a natural human movement that we all begin soon after we learn to stand erect. As such, you might assume that there is no right or wrong way to run. However, the human body is mechanical in nature, a series of levers (bones) that rotate around fulcra (joints) when acted upon by muscles. Just like any other machine, it is subject to wear and tear, and body mechanics can become less efficient.

Poor postural habits, tight or weak muscles, and overuse can all affect the mechanical efficiency of your running gait. Unless corrected, poor running mechanics can lead to pain and injury, and can compromise your performance. Yet changing the way you run can be difficult without understanding the many factors that play into optimal running performance. Running Gait Re-Training is a personalized program that evaluates and analyzes your unique running gait, and fine tunes the mechanics behind it so you can enjoy a lifetime of pain free running with minimal risk of injury.

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What Can RGR Do for Me?

There are many benefits to running gait retraining. If you are recovering from an injury, RGR can be a great asset to your rehabilitation program. Improving your mechanics during the course of your recovery can help you grow stronger and maintain your strength gains as you begin to train again. At NYDNR, we utilized the AlterG Antigravity Treadmill to speed your recovery and overcome gait deficiencies.

If you suffer from chronic pain associated with running, correcting your gait is critical to prevent further injury and to begin to run pain-free. If your goal is improved run time, RGR can tweak the mechanical deficiencies that are holding you back from peak performance. If you are new to running, RGR can teach you to run efficiently so you can avoid the pain and injuries often associated with running.

Gait retraining to prevent running injuries

How Does RGR Work?

Running Gait Retraining is personalized for each individual. The anatomy of every runner is unique, and therefore your body mechanics are also distinct. Running gait analysis is a complex science with a steep learning curve. After obtaining a comprehensive medical profile, NYDNR will analyze your movement mechanics using state-of-the art equipment that utilizes virtual imaging to identify problem areas. We will then design a training protocol and regimen to help you overcome deficiencies in your running gait.

How Many RGR Sessions Will I Need?

The number of RGR sessions will vary with the needs of the individual. If recovering from an injury, you may need several sessions to help you get back to pain-free running. The clinicians at NYDNR will work with you for as many sessions as you need to overcome your mechanical deficiencies. Typically it will require just a few sessions to improve your running gait. It is also advised that you return to NYDNR for periodic check up sessions to ensure that old habits have not returned.

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In this instance, an athlete was originally diagnosed with minor quadriceps muscle strain and was treated for four weeks, with unsatisfactory results. When he came to our clinic, the muscle was not healing, and the patients’ muscle tissue had already begun to atrophy.

Upon examination using MSUS, we discovered that he had a full muscle thickness tear that had been overlooked by his previous provider. To mitigate damage and promote healing, surgery should have been performed immediately after the injury occurred. Because of misdiagnosis and inappropriate treatment, the patient now has permanent damage that cannot be corrected.

The most important advantage of Ultrasound over MRI imaging is its ability to zero in on the symptomatic region and obtain imaging, with active participation and feedback from the patient. Using dynamic MSUS, we can see what happens when patients contract their muscles, something that cannot be done with MRI. From a diagnostic perspective, this interaction is invaluable.

Dynamic ultrasonography examination demonstrating
the full thickness tear and already occurring muscle atrophy
due to misdiagnosis and not referring the patient
to proper diagnostic workup

Demonstration of how very small muscle defect is made and revealed
to be a complete tear with muscle contraction
under diagnostic sonography (not possible with MRI)

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Complete tear of rectus femoris
with large hematoma (blood)

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Separation of muscle ends due to tear elicited
on dynamic sonography examination

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