Physio urges caution to minimise Pentath injury

Neil Vickers from Warwick Physioworks shows the best way to treat an injury.
Neil Vickers from Warwick Physioworks shows the best way to treat an injury. Erin Smith

AFTER putting in months and months of training in preparation for the Warwick Pentath Event, the last thing any athlete wants to happen is pull a hamstring or tear a calf muscle.

Warwick Physioworks owner and physiotherapist Neil Vickers said there were some simple steps Pentath competitors could take to avoid injury before and during the weekend-long event.

Mr Vickers, who is a runner himself, said with only three weeks to go, it was important not to increase the training workload too much.

"There is not going to be a massive increase in fitness levels in three weeks," Mr Vickers said.

"There should be a gradual increase at this stage and then two weeks before the race competitors should start to ease back ready for the event.

"The Pentath is great because there is something for every fitness level."

Mr Vickers said if you were to feel a bit of a niggle there was no need to panic.

"If you feel a niggle you just need basic first aid; rest, ice and compression," he said.

"A big thing then is stretching, particularly the tight areas.

"You also need to avoid overuse, which happens from building up and putting extra pressure on muscles.

"If you feel tight have a day or two rest to recover."

The physio said this year he had not had many people coming in claiming injury as a result of training for the Pentath.

But Mr Vickers said during these last few weeks calves and ITBs were the most vulnerable.

"Even just adding preventative ice after a run can help avoid injury," he said.

"And stretching.

"Just the basic stretches for your calves, hamstrings and quads.

"The ITB is harder to stretch.

"The easiest way is to roll-up a towel and roll it along the outside of your leg.

"If you are not feeling better after a day or two you should consult your appropriate health professional.

Now Warwickites will be competing in more than one event over the weekend, some taking to the start line for all five.

Mr Vickers said warming-up and cooling-down between events would help keep the body ready for action.

"Most runners would be aware of the importance of warm-up and cool-down aspects of a training session," he said.

"It is important to warm up and stretch in between events.

"A warm-up could be a light jog before the event to get the muscles working.

"Stretching after is more important than before a race, cold stretching does not do much."

Mr Vickers also said hydration would help keep off injury.

Also on Mr Vickers' list of tips was to avoid wearing a new pair of shoes on race day.

"They need to be worn in," he said.

"To avoid blisters and you have to make sure they fit comfortably."

The Warwick Pentath is on May 25-26.

To enter head to


Physio Tips

  • Warm up and cool down
  • Stretch
  • Ease back training two weeks before race day
  • Rest if tight
  • Preventative ice
  • Hydrate on the day
  • Have comfy shoes that are not brand new

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