Your Eyes, Feet, and the Floor Keys to Performance and Pain

If you have ever worked with us you would know how important your eyes, being barefoot, and the floor are.

If you haven’t worked with us in the past or during your initial visit you will probably be wondering: “Why is everyone barefoot, why is everyone always on the floor and why do they care about how my eyes move?”

Before we begin to answer the “Why?” we should start with the “What”; What exactly do we do? We are not in the fitness business or the physical therapy business; We are in the Optimization Business. Whether you have pain, are an athlete trying to stay healthy, you’re trying to outperform your competition, just had surgery, trying to break a record or just trying to hit your fitness goals, we are here to Optimize your human experience by achieving those goals. And guess what, your eyes, the floor, and your barefeet are important ingridients to the formula.

Your Output is only as good as the Input

Barefeet

You have about 200,000 thousand nerve endings in your foot, yes, TWO HUNDRED THOUSAND! Each of those nerve endings are called exteroceptors which provide sensory information to your brain through external stimuli. Guess what? This makes your foot one of the most nerve-rich parts of your body! Your feet are crucial in providing proprioception and communicating to the brain what the body needs to do as you walk, run, jump and play. But unfortunately, we have diminished or delayed the amount of information the brain gets by wearing cushioned shoes. Shoes are great and cool but they eliminate your foot’s ability to feel, to receive the external stimuli they need in order to properly communicate with your brain. Thus, when you come see us for whatever reason, we will address that communication problem by making you go barefoot, and sometimes, that’s all you need!

Eyes

Along with your feet your eyes are crucial in recieving information. The eyes provide a large amount of the Neurosensory input your brain needs for motor control (motor control refers to the process by which the nervous system coordinates the muscle and limbs to achieve a desired movement or set of actions). Have you ever been walking on the beach and come across a patch of shells or rocks? You probably will do two things; either walk the other way or walk as lightly as you can through them. You did that thanks to the information your eyes gave your brain. Your eyes sent the info to your brain and your brain established that there was a threat, thus going into a sympathic state (Fight or Flight. Based on the information and how your brain processed it, you either walked around (flight) or just walked through (fight).

If there is a dysfunction in your eye movement, the input will be faulty and your brain will have a harder time processing the information, affecting motor control. Your eyes are crucial to your performance. Are you the person that always misses what you’re aiming at? You might want to check how your eyes are moving and how well they are sending information to the brain.

The eyes will lead us to the next topic….

The Floor

Whats up with the floor? Above we mentioned how crucial the information your eyes send to the brain is, now Imagine if you have a fear of falling; whether its because of a previous injury or just scared to fall on your ass. If you are scared of the floor, it now becomes a threat. You will respond by going into a sympathetic state (fight or flight), and you will go into flight mode, this will hinder motorol control, which can be a reason for you falling in 1..2..3…

Hopefully you didn’t fall! Have you ever been somewhere up high and someone tells you not to look down? You look down and all of a sudden you lose your balance. Well that’s what happens when the floor is a threat. Now lets add some shoes, your feet have no awareness and can’t provide your brain with the information it needs for motor control. It sounds like you will be having a bad time walking, running, jumping, and you’re probably losing your balance all the time.

Our goal is to establish the floor as a safe place and remove it from being a threat.

Optimizing the Human Experience

The floor is no longer a threat, your feet and your eyes can now provide your brain with the information it needs through better input, we now have the desired motor control to prevent injuries, enhance performance and maybe remove pain. We have now achieved Optimization of your Human Experience.

By: Hector Maradiaga Co-Founder | Performance Specialist

About Infinity Sports Institute

Infinity Sports Institute is dedicated in optimizing the human experience through sports science, sports medicine and technology. We believe Physical, Mental and Social components are pillars to optimizing the human experience.

For all your performance, recovery, rehab and consultant needs, make sure to contact us, or come visit us at Infinity Sports Institute in our Brickell Location (42 SW 6th ST). Click Here to Schedule Your Free RockTape Session!

Contact

infinitysi.com

info@infinitysi.com

305.423.8242

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IT Band and Knee Pain? Might be your Butt!

The Gluteus Maximus 

IT Band Issues, Low Back Pain, Hamstring Injuries, Knee Pain, Hip and Knee Injuries, Lack of Performance, Loss of Balance, Running Slow, or worse – Seeing NO Gains? Is this you? Read Below. 

 

The Glute. Max.

Is definitely a nice muscle to look at and one of the most powerful muscles we have. Unfortunately many of us suffer from “Glute Amnesia”, the lack of this muscle to actually work. In rehab & performance this is a topic that is touched on quite a bit. If you’ve ever been to a good Therapist, Strength and Conditioning coach, or Performance Specialist, we bet they have checked if those “awesome to look” at muscles are actually working.  

You’re probably wondering, “Are my Glutes. Working?”… Well Probably not. We know, we know, you lift like everyday, run and you where a high school all star. But before we try and prove each other wrong lets go over the Gluteus Maximus.  

Why is your Butt so important?   

This awesome muscle definitely connects to many things at its origin and insertion – Imagine how it would make you feel if it’s sleeping on the job.  

At its Origin the Glute Max inserts into the Fascia of the gluteus medius; the external surface of the ilium behind the posterior gluteal line; the fascia of the  erector spinae; the dorsal surface of the sacrum; the lateral margin of the coccyx; the sacrotuberal ligament.   

At its Insertion the Glute Max inserts through the Upper fibers, to the posterior part of the iliotibial tract and the fasciae latae muscles; Through the Lower fibers, to the gluteal tuberosity of the proximal femur.   

did you read all that 🧐? If you didn’t here’s the quickie: 

The Glute Max inserts/connects with the Glute Medius, ilium, your lower back muscles, sacrum, coccyx, a ligament at the lower and back part of the pelvis, IT Band, TFL, and the femur.  

That’s a ton of connections and things that can have issues if your Glute Max is not up to par .  

Now that you know where it connects – here are its actions (what it does) 

It performs extension of the femur from the flexed position in the hip joint; lateral stabilization of the hip and knee joints; external rotation of the femur.   

The Glute Max helps you bring back the femur from a flexed hip position such as a deadlift, Romanian Deadlift, Running (extension of the hip). It helps us stabilize the hip and knee joints as well as helping us externally rotate the femur.  

We can definitely agree that this awesome muscle needs to be functional during all activities: walking, using the stairs, running, weightlifting, dancing, and making the magic happen  

Use it or Lose it!

You ever hear the saying “Use it’s or Lose it” well that is perfect when describing what happens to muscles that don’t get used properly. Your Glute Max is supposed to do many things, but, what happens if you sit on it for 8 hours, or your run looks more like a jog between mile 3 and 12 and you’re not going through a full running gait cycle? Unfortunately that really powerful muscle can become inhibited and atrophy. The under used Glute will recruit less motor units causing it to work less and eventually start shrinking : “You’re going to lose your Gains!”.  

In the previous paragraphs you learned where the Glute. Max connects and what it does. Now, if it’s inhibited,  it will cause energy leaks causing other muscles to absorb more energy and work harder as well. As the Glute Max atrophies it will cause tension in the areas where it connects.   

If the Glute is sleeping on the job, it can be a reason for the IT Band issues your experiencing, that constant tension and pain in your lower back, that lateral hip pain, or knee pain. A non functional Glute Max can also be a catalyst for an injury such as ligament tear/sprain, lack of balance and loss of performance.  

So,  is your Glue Max working? Properly? Don’t Know? Come Check us out, send us a message or book directly using the Link on this page!  

By: Hector Maradiaga Co-Founder | Performance Specialist

About Infinity Sports Institute

Infinity Sports Institute is dedicated in optimizing the human experience through sports science, sports medicine and technology. We believe Physical, Mental and Social components are pillars to optimizing the human experience.

For all your performance, recovery, rehab and consultant needs, make sure to contact us, or come visit us at Infinity Sports Institute in our Brickell Location (42 SW 6th ST). Click Here to Schedule Your Free RockTape Session!

Contact

infinitysi.com

info@infinitysi.com

305.423.8242

FOLLOW US ON:

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Running: Stretching To Improve Your Running Pt.2

Static Stretching, The Good, The Bad And The Ugly

Whats up with static stretching? We will explore exactly what is static stretching the good the bad and the ugly. This is part 2 of  “Running: Stretching To Improve Your Running Pt.1″.

What is static stretching?

The actual physiology of it. There are several parts to static stretching, but first let’s talk about physiology. Muscles are basically like rubber bands that pull from one end to another end and cause a movement. One side connects to a bone with a tendon then moves to the muscle, then to another tendon and back to another bone. How do they know when to pull, how much to pull and when to stop (before injury)? The stimuli needed is provided by the nervous system. The nervous system integrates into the Golgi-Tendons and Muscle Spindles to give feedback on the muscle tendon stress.

The tendon itself has levels of flexibility the stages are called the stress to strain ratio; meaning the more tensile stress(stretch) is placed on the connective tissue the higher the strain.

If you look at the graph you’d notice that every type of tissue has a peak in elasticity, you’d also notice a plastic region, that’s the “no, no” region. The Golgi tendons and muscle spindles will always let you know when you’ve reached that far with; pain, massive discomfort and more tightness rather than flexibility. our goal is to always stop just at the peak of the elastic stage.

What’s so bad and ugly about static stretching?

There really is no ugliness, it’s how it’s used and taught that is ugly. For static stretching, it can be held from 15sec-1 minute. What decides how long to hold or how often to stretch is the need for that individual.

i.e.

A contortionist needs a massive amount of flexibility and enough strength

A Powerlifter needs enough flexibility to be able to move through movements in specific areas

A Gymnast needs enough flexibility and strength to maintain a certain pose.

What happens when those who need power rather than flexibility stretch way too much or too often? They get weaker and have a greater chance of injury.  The reason has to do with the new found range of motion not being fully trained to execute load and leading to the plasticity region.

The other ugly part is how people teach stretching. The two stretches that we would advise people to stop doing is the stand to toe touches and the infamous pigeon stretch. Those are some good stretches, if you’re looking to strain the mcl and lower back.

When is Static Stretching Good? 

Static stretching is great when the participant needs to decrease stiffness and increase range of motion for event or activity/sport. Stretching will allow the participant to increase their “stretch-tolerance” allowing them to gain more flexibility.

“But what about for recovery?”, doing mild exercise is actually proven to be better as a cool down than actual stretching. For a thorough and great write up regarding stretching and recovery read the following by the NSCA:

 

By: Eric Martinez Co-Founder | Clinical Performance Specialist

About Infinity Sports Institute

Infinity Sports Institute is dedicated in optimizing the human experience through sports science, sports medicine and technology. We believe Physical, Mental and Social components are pillars to optimizing the human experience.

For all your performance, recovery, rehab and consultant needs, make sure to contact us, or come visit us at Infinity Sports Institute in our Brickell Location (42 SW 6th ST). Click Here to Schedule Your Free RockTape Session!

Contact

infinitysi.com

info@infinitysi.com

305.423.8242

FOLLOW US ON:

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Running: Strength Training To Improve Your Running Pt.1

Strength training for Runners

Strength Training is very overlooked and shied away from topic in the running community, as their are many myths, such as “Strength Training or Lifting Weights will make me slow”.  Strength training is a crucial component in keeping you healthy, strong, and running your best.

Runners love to run and base everything on running exercises. Here are some other famous quotes we’ve heard over the years;

“ I want to be faster let me run faster during miles”

“ let’s do fartleck instead”

” I need more endurance, let me add another mile”

And my favorite “ Weight training, won’t make me faster or let me run more”.

Can Strength Training Really Help Me?

By actually adding some form of  resistance training, whether it is maximal strength or endurance training time to fatigue will decrease, rate of force production will decrease ( this is good) and overall run time will decrease. Almost forgot to mention, impact absorption also increases which decreases the chances of injury.

One great study on this was on maximal strength training by kyvind stkren of Norway1. Their program was 24 sessions over a 8 week period, 3 days a week of 4 sets of 4 reps of half squats. At the end there was an increase of rep max of 33%, rate of force production of 26%, rate of exertion by 70%, time to exhaustion increased by 5%, but there was no correlation to vo2 max (this is normal when performing tests that do not change intensities, not a graded test).

Another study we’ll mention did a training program using both strength and endurance which showed  improvements in time to exhaustion2

In short, by adding a resistance training program that is focused on power development  and velocity it will dramatically increase a runners speed and time to exhaustion ( endurance, Lactic acid tolerance). This also lessens the increase of mass(weight) and focuses more on the neuromuscular adaptions needed for power.

Maximal Strength Training Improves Running Economy in Distance Runners KYVIND STKREN1,2, JAN HELGERUD1,3, EVA MARIA STKA2 , and JAN HOFF1,4 1 Department of Circulation and Medical Imaging, Faculty of Medicine, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, NORWAY; 2 Department of Sport and Outdoor Life Studies, Telemark University College, NORWAY; 3 Hokksund Rehabilitation Centre, NORWAY; and 4 Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, St.Olav University Hospital, NORWAY

Tested LT HR, VO2, 1RM and RFD focused

1rm test, 10 reps of 50%, 5 reps of 60%, 3 eps of 70%, 1 reps of 80%, then 1 rep adding 2.5kg till true 1RM

Program 4sets*4RM half squats 3 days out of the week,    8wks

Added 2.5 if performed 5reps

1RM- increase 33%,    RFD increased 26%,  RE increased 70%  TTE- decreased 5% 72 sec

Not concruent with vo2

For ideas  or help on strengthening follow us on Instagram or send us an email . We also have online programs for all your strength needs.

Explosive-strength training improves 5-km running time by improving running economy and muscle power LEENA PAAVOLAINEN,1 KEIJO HA¨ KKINEN,2 ISMO HA¨ MA¨ LA¨ INEN,1 ARI NUMMELA,1 AND HEIKKI RUSKO1 1KIHU-Research Institute for Olympic Sports; and 2Neuromuscular Research Center and Department of Biology of Physical Activity, University of Jyva¨skyla¨, SF-40700 Jyva¨skyla¨, Finland

  • Increase 2-4vo2
  • .95 on forward jump

Effects of concurrent endurance and strength training on running economy and V0 2 kinetics GREGOIRE P. MILLET, BERNARD JAOUEN, FABIO BORRANI, and ROBIN CANDAU UPRES-EA 2991, Sport, Performance, Sante; Faculte des Sciences du Sport, Montpellier, FRANCE;

Stay tuned for Pt.2

By: Eric Martinez Co-Founder | Clinical Performance Specialist

About Infinity Sports Institute

Infinity Sports Institute is dedicated in optimizing the human experience through sports science, sports medicine and technology. We believe Physical, Mental and Social components are pillars to optimizing the human experience.

For all your performance, recovery, rehab and consultant needs, make sure to contact us, or come visit us at Infinity Sports Institute in our Brickell Location (42 SW 6th ST). Click Here to Schedule Your Free RockTape Session!

Contact

infinitysi.com

info@infinitysi.com

305.423.8242

FOLLOW US ON:

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Running: Using RockTape To Improve Your Running !

Using RockTape To Improve Your Running

I am sure you have seen a numerous amounts of athletes on TV rocking this cool looking tape on their shoulders, necks, backs and other areas. From Olympic Swimming to NBA or the NFL, athletes of all kinds are enjoying the benefits of this tape.  I’m sure you’re wondering how it can help your running, right? But, before we explain how it can be used to improve your running, let’s find out what it is.

So what exactly is RockTape?

RockTape is a Kinesiology Tape preferred by many due to its high quality, pliability and great adhesive. RockTape is made from 97% Cotton 3% Nylon; with a hypo-allergenic, acrylic based adhesive that’s free of latex. This allows RockTape to outperform the competition by being stretchier and stickier.

But what is Kinesiology Tape?

Kinesiology Tape was developed in the 1970s by Dr.Kenzo Kase, from Kojimachi, Tokyo,as a way to prolong the healing effects of his treatment for his patients through the skin.

Kinesiology Tape is not like Athletic Tape. Athletic Tape is meant to be rigid, restrict motion and add support, as where Kinesiology Tape is meant to be flexible not restricting and assist in mobility, plus more!

RockTape can be used in many ways for multiple benefits.

  • To Relieve Pain
  • To Activate or De-Activate a Muscle
  • To Reduce Swelling
  • To Delay Fatigue
  • To Decompress
  • To Enhance Movement and Improve Posture

 

My run was amazing!! The tape was great I attribute he comfort of my run to the rock tape!!! You guys…. Rock!!
Mary Hussey – 2018 Miami Marathon participant

Improve your running

One of the major issues with runners is that lingering discomfort or pain. RockTape can be used to help with that knee, hip or lower back pain by altering the pain signals to the brain changing the way your body perceives the pain. It can do this by lifting the skin and decompressing the area where pain or discomfort is present (as shown in the image above).

That constant Knee pain/discomfort can actually be caused by energy leaks(click here for previous post on energy leaks) due to inefficient biomechanics. A great example of this is knee pain caused by an over-pronating foot. You can use RockTape to temporarily correct the medial collapse which can improve that knee pain/discomfort as well as improve your gait! This is done as the RockTape will provide Kinesthetic Guidance (tactile stimuli providing feedback to the brain on how to move) so you can move more efficiently.  The RockTape acts as a physical cue to better enhance a movement pattern (as shown below)

Swollen Knees or Ankles?

No worries, RockTape can be used to help assist the lymphatic system by draining lymphatic fluid! This will not only help reduce swelling but it also helps with bruising!

 

RockTape can be used in so many different ways to help improve your running. Although the taping looks simple only a trained professional is able to determine why it’s needed, what needs to be taped and how it should be taped. The why, what and how are crucial in achieving a dramatic and positive effect.

By: Hector Maradiaga Co-Founder | Performance Specialist

Would you like to see how RockTape can work for you?

Come visit us at Infinity Sports Institute in our Brickell Location (42 SW 6th ST). Click Here to Schedule Your Free RockTape Session!

About Infinity Sports Institute

Infinity Sports Institute is dedicated in optimizing the human experience through sports science, sports medicine and technology. We believe Physical, Mental and Social components are pillars to optimizing the human experience.

For all your performance, recovery, rehab and consultant needs, make sure to contact us!

Contact

Infinitysi.com

info@infinitysi.com

305.423.8242 

Yelp  Facebook Instagram

 

Running: Stretching To Improve Your Running Pt.1

Stretching To Improve Your Running Pt.1

For years now, people and professionals have been advocates of stretching before an exercise routine or a physical event, but we have noticed that many recreational athletes make the same mistake over and over again, when it comes to stretching in general.

Should I stretch before running?

Here is what we typically see:

Athlete 1: Does 10 static stretches for 2 reps holding 30 seconds each and then runs all out

Athlete 2: Does  yoga any chance they get since it will make them more flexible and “prevent” them from getting tight.

By now you’re probably wondering “what I’m getting at?”. We are not against stretching before a run, if it’s done correctly!

Physiologically speaking, certain performance goals require a specific amount of stiffness and is quite normal in athletes. For those aiming to hit new speeds or to produce power, stiffness is needed. Let’s try a quick activity to understand the importance of stiffness in performance.

Take a rubber band and hold it at both ends so that it is loose and has no tension, pull it lightly.

Now do the same thing but this time stretch the rubber band so that it has tension, now pull it down the middle.

Which of the two methods had a good return of power? The one with tension, right? Our muscles have the same properties. Without the proper tension throughout a motion the less amount of force a person will be able to produce or absorb; leading to a weaker, slower movement and higher risk of injury.

How Should I stretch before running?

 Don’t get me wrong, I’m not telling you to not stretch. We still require good range of motion to perform proper technique and prevent injuries. What I’m saying is to change from excessive static stretching to pre exercise dynamic stretching instead.

One study by Zourdos1 found a significant, similar increase in flexibility in static stretching and dynamic stretching in endurance runners; but there was a significant decrease in performance in the statically stretched athlete and an increase in performance in the dynamic stretch group. Performance was based on two things time to reach distance and time to exhaustion.

Other professionals will say the same. So what do we all agree on?

A 5-10 minute of a dynamic warm up of the necessary muscles for the sport or event will not only increase range of motion, but increase metabolites and neuromuscular junctions for the activity; meaning a better outcome and prevention of muscle strains.

For ideas  or help on stretching follow us on Instagram or send us an email

Stay tuned for Pt.2
By: Eric Martinez Co-Founder | Clinical Performance Specialist

About Infinity Sports Institute

Infinity Sports Institute is dedicated in optimizing the human experience through sports science, sports medicine and technology. We believe Physical, Mental and Social components are pillars to optimizing the human experience.

For all your performance, recovery, rehab and consultant needs, make sure to contact us!

Contact

infinitysi.com

info@infinitysi.com

305.423.8242

Follow us on:

Yelp Facebook Instagram

 

1Effects of Dynamic Stretching on Energy Cost and Running Endurance Performance in Trained Male Runners

Zourdos, Michael C; Wilson, Jacob M; Sommer, Brian A; Lee, Sang-Rok; Park, Young-Min; Henning, Paul C; Panton, Lynn B; Kim, Jeong-Su

The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: February 2012 – Volume 26 – Issue 2 – p 335-341

doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e318225bbae

 

2The Effects of Static Stretching on Running Economy and Endurance Performance in Female Distance Runners During Treadmill Running

Mojock, Chris D1; Kim, Jeong-Su1; Eccles, David W2; Panton, Lynn B1

The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: August 2011 – Volume 25 – Issue 8 – p 2170-2176

doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e3181e859db

 

Pain During Running

Running with pain is no fun! Especially when you are training for a goal, whether it is  to reach a personal best time or lose weight.

Have you looked for many solutions, but the pain keeps coming? It’s important to understand where the pain is coming from and why. To comprehend where the pain is coming from we must first understand 2 things, what is gait and what are energy leaks.

What is Gait?

In simple terms gait is how we walk or run. The difference between running and walking is not just the amount of energy you use but also the contact time with the ground. During walking we have both our feet in contact with the ground providing a more stable base vs during running only 1 foot comes in contact with the ground, we also achieve “double flight”(when both feet are off the ground at the same time).

During the Running Gait Cycle there are 2 phases (although they can be broken down into 6 or 8 sub phases)

 

1 Stance phase
– initial contact
– loading response
– mid stance
– terminal stance
2 Swing phase
– pre swing
– initial swing
– mid swing
– terminal swing

Most hamstring injuries happen during the stance phases & the terminal swing.

During each phase your upper body is being utilized which includes: abdominals, lats, triceps and low back muscles.

What are energy leaks & how can it affect my running ?

An energy leak occurs when all the energy generated to do a movement or task does not go into that movement or task, therefor creating stress in the body and causing unnatural motion in other parts of the body (dysfunctional movement patterns).

Think about this, if your glutes don’t fire the lumbar spine and the hamstrings will experience unnecessary loading of energy. The stress caused by the unnatural movement and unnatural energy absorption/production can cause the hamstring fibers to tear and the excessive loading/compression of the lumbar may cause disc issues over time.

This can affect your running by causing pain, injury or making you fatigue quicker! Making you slower or worse, putting a pause on your running.

How can I avoid energy leaks and reduce my pain?

We recommend that you get a thorough biomechanical evaluation by a professional. To schedule a thorough biomechanical evaluation click here or the link above!  Also make sure to follow us on Instagram, FaceBook and our Website.