I don't static stretch, never have, I just don't get it.
If a lion starts chasing a gazelle or antelope do you see the gazelle or antelope start stretching before it runs away? I don't think so!
Stretch and you're dead meat!! LOL :-)
Agree with all of this. Every time I've been to a physio, the problem is always diagnosed as a weak muscle and the remedy is those boring, repetitive exercises that physios seem to specialize in - but they work, as they accurately target the lazy muscle. But even so, I'm amazed at how effectively the slant board has eliminated residual soreness/tightness in my calf muscles and hamstrings. No amount of stretching has any effect here.
Follow up question - where's the muscle imbalance making my left IT band tight?
IT Band always points back to too much quad and not enough glute medius. Be should you are locking out (keeping it straight) your knee/leg when doing the slant board movement sequence.
And when running, you might be keeping your leg(s) too bent throughout your stride. This will also cause more ankle flexion because the knee is going forward and staying bend.
If this is the case, look to get your stance leg just a little more straight with better hip extension to help. Hit the drills in Cool Impossible also: powerful stair running, and skipping for distance.
Also work on your cadence with that leg.
Downhills can also cause some IT issues if you are over striding- which is easy to do. Look to pull in your foot strike more under you. Slow down to achieve this. Speed will come thru time.
LOVE hearing how effective the slant board has been for you and how it makes your body feel. This is it - we do not haves to feel all these aches and pains and tightness as runners. When we are using muscles appropriately, there is not the tug and pull that creates tightness.
That's great, Eric, many thanks for giving this your time. you must be working over your morning espresso?
In one sense, the IT band stuff is frustrating because your training has eliminated all the other aches and pains I ever had as a runner! and it really does feel fantastic - apart from that. On the other hand, I know it can be resolved with patience and a bit of hard work.
Yeah, lazy glute medius. that would certainly make sense. Running through your list...
slant board lock out? yep, doing that.
bent legs? maybe, though photos suggest otherwise. plus I'm really concentrating on that bow/arrow visualisation, so I'm pretty sure it's not that.
cadence? that's the one thing I know is fine!
downhill? no, it comes on with any use. today it's sore because of 6 x 4 minute SPZ 4 repeats yesterday!
I'm wondering if the glute is just not firing appropriately in the run cycle. Or firing intermittently?
And, guilty confession, while I'm having a blast with the slant board and the fitball, I'm not doing the fitball lunges. could they help?
YES - the lunge is a biggie and will really help, as will the pistol squat.
Start with the lunge with foot on floor and progress from there.
Also, you might try doing the slant board sequence BEFORE running, as a warm-up, to help activate the glute just before you run.