No pain during the Four Days Marches
Walking the Four Days Marches is tough on your body. We asked sport masseur Frans Friederichs for some tips to help you complete the event without any major injuries. His good care has ensured that many walkers have left the massage table feeling revived.
‘If you are used to walking with a rucksack, make sure that it also has a chest strap and hip belt. Fatigue will make you stoop your shoulders, hunch your back and drag your feet. This is bad news for your back. If you’re not taking much with you, go for a waist bag.'
‘Walking the Four Days Marches is an achievement, not a competition. Don’t try to keep up with the troops — walk at your own pace. This prevents you from overstretching your groin muscle and keeps you free from painful and long-term injuries. A pace of around six kilometres per hour, excluding breaks, is a great walking speed.’
‘Your walking posture is influenced by the surface on which you walk. An asphalt road is rounded. If you walk on the same side of the road the whole time, you will end up walking crooked, so make sure you switch between the left, right and the middle of the road. Your hips will thank you for it.’
‘The same applies to knees. An uneven surface can cause you to walk crooked, which can lead to knee joint pain. If your feet are misaligned, wear a corrective insole and make sure you switch between the left, right and middle of the road.’
‘If you take too large strides, you will be exerting an enormous tractive force on your shins and will risk irritating your shin bone. This leaves you with what is known as a shin splint. The best remedy is to cool your shins with ice-cold water or cooling gels. Make sure you cool your shin as soon as it starts to hurt. Don’t try to push yourself and walk through the pain. Doing this increases the risk of long-lasting injuries.’
For aching muscles
The Finnish brand Ice Power has a number of gels for cooling, preventing or treating injuries. During the Four Days Marches, the Ice Power team will spray your calves at the start and finish location and along the route, making sure that your burning calves are good to go in no time.
For more information on the products, please visit: https://www.icepower.nl/