Welcome to the Moorpark Striders Track Club! The Striders Board sincerely hopes you will enjoy the coming season and find the club and the sport of track and field as fun as we do. We also hope you come to feel that the club is your club too, supporting it where you can and helping your child have a positive experience with one of the best "life" sports around. The Moorpark Striders is celebrating its 42nd season of participation in youth track and field. We are a member of the Ventura County Youth Track Conference (VCYTC).
Our mission is to introduce youth to track and field competition by giving them the ability to learn, practice and compete in track and field events. As a member of the Ventura County Youth Track and Field Conference (VCYTC) we will host and participate in track meets. We will supply coaching, specialty instruction, and technique clinics as well as facilities and equipment. We will endeavor to provide such opportunities to all with desire, and will grant scholarships to those in need to the extent of our ability to do so.
One of the most common injuries experienced in Track and Field is shin splints. Shin splints is a common term used for a half a dozen lower leg problems ranging from nerve irritations to tendonitis to stress fractures. The most common type that is experienced involves the tearing away of the muscle tissue that attaches to the front of the lower leg. The beginner runner and the runner that resumes training after a long lay off are most susceptible to this injury. The connective sheath attached to the muscles and bone of the lower leg become irritated, resulting in a razor-sharp pain in the lower leg along the inside of the tibia or shin bone.
How Are They Caused?
There can be several causes for shin splints. Only when possible causes are identified can shin splints be eliminated.
Possible causes include:
Poor Fitting Shoes or Shoes with Poor Arch Support
Tight Achilles and calf muscles.
An inexperienced runner just beginning to run.
Running on uneven terrain.
A sudden increase in faster running (speed work).
A sudden change from soft to hard running surfaces.
Excessive uphill running.
Poor running mechanics that contribute to shin splints include excessive forward lean, excessive weight on the ball of the foot, running with toes pointed outward and landing too far back on the heels.
In many cases one is able to continue training with a mild case of shin splints. Time off from running may be required in severe cases. In such cases rest and ice would be needed to decrease inflammation. For the milder, yet painful cases, in which running can be maintained, consider the following treatment tips:
Changing shoes may be necessary. Poorly fit shoes or poor arch support are a major contributor to shin splints.
Stretching prior to running will be beneficial. Here are some stretches you can do at home:
Towel stretch: Sit on a hard surface with one leg stretched out in front of you. Loop a towel around your toes and the ball of your foot and pull the towel toward your body keeping your knee straight. Hold this position for 15 to 30 seconds then relax. Repeat 3 times. When you don't feel much of a stretch using the towel, start using the standing calf stretch.
Standing calf stretch: Facing a wall, put your hands against the wall at about eye level. Keep one leg back with the heel on the floor, and the other leg forward. Turn your back foot slightly inward (as if you were pigeon-toed) as you slowly lean into the wall until you feel a stretch in the back of your calf. Hold for 15 to 30 seconds. Repeat 3 times and then switch the position of your legs and repeat the exercise 3 times. Do this exercise several times each day.
Anterior compartment stretch: Stand with one hand against a wall or chair for balance. Bend your knee and grab the front of your foot on your leg which is away from the wall. Bend the front of the foot toward your heel. You should feel a stretch in the front of your shin. Hold for 15 to 30 seconds. Repeat 3 times.
Resisted ankle dorsiflexion: Sit with one leg out straight and your foot facing a doorway. Tie a loop in one end of elastic tubing. Put your foot through the loop so that the tubing goes around the arch of your foot. Tie a knot in the other end of the tubing and shut the knot in the door. Move backward until there is tension in the tubing. Keeping your knee straight, pull your foot toward your body, stretching the tubing. Slowly return to the starting position. Do 3 sets of 10.
Ankle range of motion: Sitting or lying down with your legs straight and your knee toward the ceiling, move your ankle up and down by pointing your toes toward your nose, then away from your body; in toward your other foot and out away from your other foot; and in circles. Only move your foot and ankle. Don't move your leg. Repeat 10 times in each direction. Push hard in all directions.
Heel raise: Balance yourself while standing behind a chair or counter. Using the chair to help you, raise your body up onto your toes and hold for 5 seconds. Then slowly lower yourself down without holding onto the chair. Hold onto the chair or counter if you need to. When this exercise becomes less painful, try lowering on one leg only. Repeat 10 times. Do 3 sets of 10.
Standing toe raise: Stand with your feet flat on the floor, rock back onto your heels and lift your toes off the floor. Hold this for 5 seconds. Do 3 sets of 10.
Normally, continued running, even if it is reduced, will help get rid of shin splints as running will help strengthen leg muscles. Heel walks and toe walks will help to warm up the shins before you run. Training on soft even surfaces will help alleviate excessive pounding. If poor running mechanics are identified work with your coach to correct them.
Once the workout is completed and after a good cool down, ice the affected area as soon as possible for 20 minutes. Plastic cups filled with water and placed in the freezer as well as baggies of ice work well.
A friction massage using the thumbs may prove to be beneficial. Firmly rub the affected area from the bottom of the leg upward. “The Stick” is a great tool for this.
Treatment Tips in summary:
Use proper shoes
Warm up prior to running (heel and toe walks)
Improve your running mechanics
Run on soft, even surfaces.
Ice shins after practice.
Friction Massage with thumbs or “The Stick”
The best way to prevent shin splints is to thoroughly warm them up before you practice. You can warm them up by walking on your toes, on your heels, writing the alphabet with your toes, and even by walking barefoot in the long jump pit sand. This will help build up your shins to prevent shin splints. Make sure that you are using shoes with good cushion and that you keep running on ultra hard surfaces to a minimum.
Finally, If you are running at school for PE - Use Proper Shoes!
Now that you have started to get in shape its time to start thinking about which events you may want to try or specialize on this season. Starting this week you will be able to take advantage of the following optional/extra specialty practices:
Sprints:Coaches Eric Bixler & HS Coach Jason Singson will be able to work with all ages of sprinter athletes on their sprint technique and block starts.
Distance: All distance runners are welcomed to join Coaches Keith & Traycie Kephart for distance work outs
Hurdles: Hurdle technique will be taught by High School Coaches Dylan, Ethan Brisley & others to all interested athletes ages Midget and up.
Long Jump: Long Jump technique will be taught to all ages by High School Coach Elisha Edwards & Scott Norton
Shot Put: Coach Ed Green will be teaching shot put technique to all interested athletes ages bantam & up. The shot put sector is located behind the New Gym above the track. Shot put practices will not begin until Tuesday, February 17th
High Jump: High Jump technique will be taught to athletes bantam ages & up by Coach Duane Plummer, HS Coaches Scott Norton & Joey Ponce.
Please check the specific specialty team websites for more information such as practice age group break downs, days, times & updates. You can do this by selecting the Our Teams tab & scroll down to the selected specialty option.
All of these practices will take place at the Moorpark High School track. Team websites and practice schedules have been set up for each of these specialty practice groups. Please go to these specialty team websites for more information.
Welcome to all the Strider Volunteer families. As we get ready for our 2015 season, I would like to introduce myself as your Volunteer Coordinator, and for those families who are new to the Striders, give you an idea of what to expect.
Please click on the Volunteering tab online to sign-up for your 3 volunteer shifts per family. We will be sending you out information regarding the responsibilities of the shift you signed up for closer to the date of that meet date.
On the Saturdays of our home meets there will be a main sign in table at the top of the stands, by the press box. Please arrive 15 minutes prior to the start of your assigned shift to sign in. Please write the first & last name of the athlete that you are providing your shift for. Please be mindful if you are signed up for the afternoon shift you will be replacing someone who has already been there for 3 +hours. After you have completed your shift please remember that you will need to sign out to receive credit
Once you sign in you will be directed to your area and given further instructions. If you are new we will try to pair you with someone who has experience. Please remember to dress appropriately, bring plenty of water, a hat and sunscreen. Most importantly remember to have fun and enjoy the best seats at the meet!
Thank you all for volunteering your time and working to provide a great experience for our kids. If you have any questions or concerns please to not hesitate to contact me.
Alexandra De Kort
Mobile: (805) 990-5666