RW visits Sweatshop's new concept store

Sweatshop, the running retailer, opened the doors to its 'concept' store last week, a three-floored space in Trump Street in the heart of the City of London. We went along for a visit to try it out.

by Katie Hiscock

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The Running School

Next door to the Altitude Centre, the Running School offers biomechanical assessments. You run for a few minutes, a video is taken from the back and side, and the trainers play it back and explain what is happening biomechanically and how your running is affected by your posture. The trainers tell me it’s important to record from the two angles to give an accurate assessment for both sides of the body. They can then draw plumblines on the video screen to demonstrate differences in stride length, foot fall and general posture from one side to the other.

Watching the playback of me bobbing up and down on the treadmill makes me wince. The trainers explain the movement chain that is producing my jack-in-the-box bounce: hypermobility in my hip flexors, weak glutes and hamstrings and a rubbish (my words) core which isn’t helping to stabilise the movement pattern in my lower body. Solution: lots of dynamic core work and single leg squats to build strength and correct the movement - particularly important now since I’ve just started marathon training again.

The trainers also pick up that I’ve suffered from ITB syndrome in the past. I'm amazed they can pick apart my injury history from one 60-second video. As a result of the pain I’ve had in my knee, my left leg has developed a curious shortened stride and my right arm is over-compensating as a result. If I'm not careful I'm pretty sure I'll end up running around in circles like a dog chasing its own tail.

To find out more about the Running School, take a look at their website.

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Discuss this story

While I appreciate that this is an advertisement it is probably worth highlighting that the following isn't strictly true!

"[Altitute training is] also helpful for general training. Training with lower atmospheric oxygen triggers physiological changes, making the body more efficient in using oxygen and allowing you to train harder for longer."

Physiological alterations can occur (e.g. increased red blood cell count, decreased plasma volume) but they might not always be beneficial for physiological (e.g. thicker blood)or exercise performance. The data for 'train high, live low' programmes such as these is very, very weak. Live high, train low offers some benefits (less so to the elites) but 'live low, train high' probably, on the balance of the data, doesn't offer any benefit to sea-level performance.

Posted: 18/12/2012 at 17:29

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