Running clinic will tackle training questions

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— Distance running is more complex than pumping your arms and lifting your legs. Scott Blair, a physical therapist with SportsMed at Yampa Valley Medical Center, occasionally catches a glimpse of a racer and cringes.

"I think how they are hurting themselves," he said.

In an effort to make running easier, more pleasurable and less painful, SportsMed has teamed with the Steamboat Springs Running Series to offer a free series of running clinics.

"SportsMed had the idea to create a series of clinics in conjunction with the running series to further educate runners as a benefit to anyone in the running series or that runs in town," running series director Heather Eller said.

The third of four clinics will take place at 6:30 p.m. today in the SportsMed offices at YVMC. Tonight's meeting will focus on running techniques and training programs tailored to various types of running.

Blair said he hopes to bring in endurance runners, shorter distance runners, former triathletes, Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club coaches and doctors to have a panel discussion on training.

"Running is a simple thing, but there are components to it," Blair said. "When runners increase mileage and speed, they run into problems."

SportsMed's first two clinics helped analyze individual form and technique by looking at what was ideal and then making suggestions for those who needed changes. The final clinic will be Aug. 26, and Blair said he is tentatively looking at bringing in a nutritionist to wrap up the series.

The clinics are free, and no registration is necessary.

Patients with running-related injuries are common visitors to SportsMed, Blair said. Foot, ankle and knee pain are quite common; the clinics are designed to help prevent those basic injuries.

The next race in the Steamboat Springs Running Series is the 10th annual Mount Werner Classic, a challenging 12-mile run or 5-mile run/walk.

For more information on the SportsMed's summer series, call 871-2370. For more information on the Steamboat Springs Running Series, visit www.runningseries.com.

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