Thursday, March 29, 2012

Minimal or Traditional? Last Day to Register!

Interested in participating in this exciting Comox Valley Footwear Research Study? We have extended the registration deadline until TODAY at 12pm noon! Check out the details below, and follow the link to register if you meet the prerequisites and want to join the study!


Or Traditional?

We want to compare the injury rates along with changes in foot structure and function between runners wearing these different types of footwear. What happens to the body, foot function and running mechanics during a 10 week introductory run:walking program in these types of shoes?

Here is how you can help!

We are seeking volunteers to participate in a 12 week study in the Comox Valley, beginning April 3rd, 2012. All levels of running ability including beginner and experienced runners are invited to participate in this study. Participants will have the opportunity to complete a progressive 'Learn to Run', run:walk training program building to 20 minutes of running, 3-4 days per week. Participants may choose to complete the program wearing either traditional or minimal footwear. This is a great opportunity for beginners who want to 'Learn to Run' and for experienced runners who want to transition into minimal footwear!

Participants are needed for the following three study groups:
1. Traditional Footwear- Beginner Runners
2. Minimal Footwear- Beginner Runners
3. Minimal Footwear- Runners with some Experience

Participants will receive the following complimentary services in exchange for volunteering for the study:
Before and after functional testing
10-week once per week coached Learn to Run Clinic
10-week Learn to Run training program
Weekly motivational & educational emails
Detailed training manual & training log

Successful participants must meet the following prerequisites in order to be eligible for the study:
'Healthy' as per the Par-Q Health Screening Form (see questions below).
18 years of age and over.
Beginner Runners- no prior running experience or no regular running for the last 4 months.
Experienced Runners-ability to run a minimum of 20 minutes 3 days per week currently BUT with no minimal footwear running experience.
Must be free of running induced injuries for a minimum of 6 weeks.
Must supply their own footwear, either traditional or minimal (see definitions below), depending on choice of study groups.

Must attend weekly clinic sessions: once per week for 12 weeks including before and after testing sessions.
Must complete 2-3 additional weekly training runs and adhere to prescribed running program.
Running Experience Group volunteers may continue with their own running programs in addition to the weekly study homework runs.

Must complete pre/post health questionnaire and submit weekly progress reports for duration of study.

Dates: Tuesdays, 5:30-6:30pm April 3-June 19, 2012
Deadline to sign up: MARCH 29TH 12NOON!

Footwear Definitions for Study:

Traditional footwear: Includes any traditional running shoe.

Minimal footwear:
4mm or less drop from heel to forefoot cushioning.
15mm or less maximum cushioning in any part of the sole between foot and ground.
No significant arch support.
Flexible structure to allow natural foot movement.

*A list of specific shoes that fall within these guidelines will be provided for participants although footwear will not be limited to these suggestions.

Answers to your Frequently Asked Questions:

Where do the training sessions take place? The Tuesday night training sessions will take place at the Courtenay Airpark. Before and after Fitness Testing sessions will take place at Ascent Physiotherapy, Comox.

Can I run on trails for my homework runs? No. All homework runs must be completed on a flat asphalt surface to ensure consistency throughout the study.

I am going to be away for 2 weeks during spring break. Can I still participate in the study? No. You will need to attend at least 9/10 of the weekly group training runs in order to contribute data to the study.

How long will we be running? Participants will be following a Learn to Run program designed for beginners. This means starting at week one with Run 1 minute : Walk 2 minutes for 6 repeats. Each week the running segments will get longer, while the walking segment will go to one minute. The final week, participants will be running 20 minutes continuously.

I am already an experienced runner, can I participate in the study? Yes please! But only in minimal footwear and only if you do not currently run in minimal footwear. This is a great opportunity to transition slowly into a minimal shoe and track changes in your foot mechanics, strength and flexibility. You will be able to continue with your regular running / training program in your regular footwear in addition to the short study homework runs.

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