Book Review, Jeff Horowitz "Quick Strength for Runners"

Discussion in 'Product Reviews' started by Alejandro 10, Dec 17, 2014.

  1. Alejandro 10

    Alejandro 10
    Expand Collapse
    Barefooters
    1. Georgia

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2011
    Messages:
    304
    Likes Received:
    102
    Aaron M. Farnham review of Horowitz, Jeff. Quick Strength for Runners: 8 Weeks to a Better Runner's Body. Boulder, Colorado: Velopress, 2013. Print.
    Note, through http://thebarefootrunners.org the publisher has provided a complimentary copy of this book in return for the following review.
    According to the back cover of Quick Strength for Runners, “Jeff Horowitz is a certified running coach and personal trainer” that has participated in over 150 marathons, and it is from this experience that he perceived the need for the present title.
    Horowitz argues that most runners would have fewer injuries if they incorporated complex movement strength training into their routines. In support the author emphasizes the highest estimated injury rate, which suggests 80% of runners will lose training time to injury each year, before addressing the benefits of strength training for the beginning athlete to the elite. From there the reader finds some of Horowitz' most effective prose of the book when he offers a rudimentary anatomy lesson that makes the information very digestible. That is followed by an overview of needed equipment and the bulk of the body of the text; a very well executed explanation of each of the program's exercises. In the spirit of keeping things simple the author has removed the guess work and provided each of the 16 proposed workouts before addressing the workout needs of one who is travelling and closing with some sound thoughts about avoiding injury and the benefits of continuing strength training upon completion of the initial program.
    The text assumes a heel striking, conventional running form. This is understandable because it allows for a greater audience than had it been directed to the forefoot or mid-foot barefoot style running population. Nevertheless, presenting this assumption could have been easily avoided while making the material more inclusive.
    Another presupposition held is that the reader has the discretionary income to purchase the necessary equipment to follow this program. Horowitz does well to suggest ways to avoid spending the full retail price for these items in a special section blurb.
    The major issue some may take with this conditioning approach is that consideration for the greater metabolic rates of the tendons and connective tissues compared to the muscles is absent from the work. If the joints do not have enough time to grow accustomed to the workload that the muscles can handle it seems reasonable to think the chance of injury might not decrease until enough time has passed for them to catch up to the strength gains.

    All things considered, I believe that Horowitz' book could be very helpful to many runners, especially those without any strength training experience or who believe they need a basic refresher on the matter.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
    Hobbit and Barefoot TJ like this.
  2. Hobbit

    Hobbit
    Expand Collapse
    Barefooters
    1. Germany &...
    2. France

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2012
    Messages:
    522
    Likes Received:
    758
    Thank you for this review! :)
    If I got it right, the author proposes specific exercises so that heel striking runners (which means necessarily shod runners) would have fewer injuries. We all know that the kind of injuries a barefoot runner might encounter are very different from those of a shod runner: stubbed and bloody toes and blisters are also due to form issues, but the form in itself is different from that of a heel striking shod runner. Which means, that the exercises to prevent injuries for barefoot runners should probably be different as well, should they not? I mean, fore-and mid-foot runners use different muscles than heel strikers (if not, we wouldn't suffer from horrible soreness during transition!) Different muscles need different exercises.
    Could this book also be helpful for barefoot runners?
     
  3. Alejandro 10

    Alejandro 10
    Expand Collapse
    Barefooters
    1. Georgia

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2011
    Messages:
    304
    Likes Received:
    102
    Hi Hobbit,

    My prima facie thought is that this book would still benefit barefoot runners as most of the exercises are movements that work through multiple planes. Also my impression is that the author assumes a heel strike because, unfortunately, that is what the majority of runners use.

    Gracia y paz,

    Aaron
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
    Hobbit likes this.

Share This Page