Cool Down Running

by Chris Doodwin

What is the best cool-down procedure after running ?

Chris sent this question :

"In which order should a cooldown follow after track efforts?

1. Strides, 5-10min jog, then static stretching or

2. 5-10min jog, strides, static stretching. regards Chris :)"

Answer: Hi Chris, from my personal perspective I have to say neither. There is absolutely no evidence that stretching as part of a cool down routine decreases injury or increase recovery time so I would stay away from it entirely. It only tends to aggrevate insertional point for the tendons/muscles.

On the other hand, strides is a great way to level things off.

What I recommend as a cool down running procedure is something like this :

1. Jogging, first at a sub-brisk pace for 1-2 minutes to flush the system after the track session. Not too fast through, maybe marathon pace. Then gradually slow down and run easy for another 5-6 minutes.

2. Finish things off with 5-7 x 15-20 second progressive strides where you gradual run faster and faster. At the end you should be no faster than your 8k/10k speed though (so no sprinting!)

I have found this to work the best, both in terms of injury prevention and recovery times.

Wish you all the best with your cool down after running !

Kind regards,

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