Postponement of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games means the athletics calendar has now officially entered hibernation.
Social distancing measures restrict movements to a radius of 2km. New norms are emerging such as solo running and virtual catch-ups with training buddies/coaches.
Home space is used creatively for stretches, mini-circuits and fitness games in tight spaces. For anyone dusting off the treadmill, you can run your sessions while imagining you are cruising around the track or your favourite hilly loop.
Social Media Apps emerged to help people plan runs while keeping within limits.
Apart from creativity with loops, quarantine provides an opportunity to focus on prehab/rehab.
Runners typically have tight upper backs, tight adductors and glute/hip flexor issues. If you don’t regularly do strength work, you could start now.
Or try ladders to improve running form. Chalk out a ladder on a footpath or driveway and take turns stepping in and out, hop-scotching and power skipping through. Skipping drills benefit runners of all levels by improving coordination, rhythm and mobility, requiring only a flat stretch of road or hallway.
Running games may still be possible to burn off some ‘quarantine’ energy’. First clear all obstacles, trip hazards or breakables in a space, or loop inside or outside the house. The “shark” and “fish” all walk or jog around and when the shark gets hungry, the fish get chased. Tag has endless variations that are active and inclusive. Always clear an area before launching an activity and use imagination to make it fun.
Athletes often have a playlist for warm-ups- what tops yours? Music boosts mood and performance-‘pump it up’. Endurance running generally rewards patience and persistence. The current requires both.
When restrictions do lift, we can resume social contact and reboot the calendar.
Meanwhile Bilboa AC are to host an athletics summer camp this year at their fantastic grass track and clubhouse.
Olympian Rosemary Ryan started her running career here and welcomed 40 children to Bilboa last year.
Camps are a mix of running, jumping, throwing and team games for primary school children for a fun introduction to athletics disciplines.
However under current circumstances, plans can only be provisional. Athletics Ireland will promote registrations when safe.
For more see #LLSport