Arcadia University’s Running Injury Clinic is going strong.
The clinic, which offers consultations for athletes and runners looking to maximize performance or recover from an injury, provides two-hour sessions that include an evaluation, exercise and stretching suggestions, and sometimes recommendations regarding more formal treatment.
“I’m probably booked for the next six weeks,” said Dr. Brian Eckenrode, the clinic’s director and an assistant professor of physical therapy. “It’s continuing to grow with very little marketing.”
Full-time physical therapy clinics might not have time to give the same level of intensive one-on-one feedback as Arcadia’s clinic, which has evaluated more than 40 people since it opened last February. While the clinic does not provide long-term treatment, Eckenrode is dedicated to looking at the person’s running style and physical fitness level in order to identify root causes of injuries and ineffective practices.
“I learned so much about my own body,” said Kara Silverman, a recent clinic visitor and runner who is clocking about 40 miles a week in preparation for an upcoming marathon in Chicago. “I learned about my strengths and weaknesses and how to fix those weaknesses to become a better runner overall.”
Not only did Silverman receive helpful recommendations regarding a couple of minor injuries in her hip and foot, she was also told that her weak core was contributing to her hip pain.
“I didn’t realize I had a weak core,” said Silverman, who is president and co-founder of a local women’s running club called S.W.I.F.T. (Strong Women In Fitness Together). “I teach yoga and other fitness classes—my friends sometimes call me ‘the queen of abs’ but obviously I now need a new nickname!”
In addition to guiding Silverman in how to work on her core correctly to prevent injury, Eckenrode videotaped her running at three different speeds, enabling him to identify some running quirks that could be worked on.
“I had no idea my right arm was moving like crazy,” Silverman said. “Also, my left foot was going over to the left side. It is really amazing what I learned.”
The running clinic also provides learning experiences for physical therapy students, many of whom have assisted Eckenrode in these sessions.
“It ties a lot of the curriculum together,” Eckenrode said. “This opportunity lets them practice things on people with real injuries.”
Silverman, who is a mother of three and owns Silvermoon Yoga LLC, said that the awareness of her form has made a noticeable difference. In fact, she thinks her session with Eckenrode could have influenced her shaving three minutes off her five-mile time.
“My hip and foot feel completely different from when I went in there,” she said. “I’m grateful.”
Make an Appointment
The Running Injury Clinic is open to the public and is currently scheduling patients on Tuesday afternoons. Single-visit assessments include a medical and running history intake, a physical examination (strength, flexibility, core, balance, alignment, function, etc.), a video running analysis, and a treatment plan recommendation. Most sessions are approximately two hours.
Cost is $120 per runner, $100 for Arcadia-associated individuals, and $50 for high school, middle school, and college students with valid school ID. All funds go to the Arcadia University Department of Physical Therapy.
For more information and to schedule an appointment, contact Dr. Brian Eckenrode at firstname.lastname@example.org.