Interview with Matt Klein, PT, DPT, PhD (c), OCS, GCS, FAAOMPT of Doctors Of Running Discusses The Secret To Running Over 70Sep 14, 2023
We sat down with Matt Klein to discuss his path to becoming a running expert. Matt started his journey as a PT patient, was inspired to become a PT and upon graduating did residencies in orthopedics and geriatrics followed by a fellowship in manual therapy. During his time in PT school Matt started Doctors Of Running, an educational website discussing the art and science behind what people put on their feet. Currently, Matt is a faculty member at West Coast University in Southern California and is pursuing his PhD.
The Secret To Running Over 70
During our interview Matt discusses his evaluation and treatment of masters runners over the age of 50. This includes his approach to a subjective and objective exam, running gait analysis and treatment approach. One of the clinical pearls Matt talks about is his exercise prescription for master's runners. He notes that contrary to popular belief masters runners, which USA Track & Field defines as runners >40 years old, build muscle strength and power similar to younger individuals. However, athletes in their 60s and 70s lose strength and power at an accelerated rate. Matt notes that while running can improve overall endurance it doesn’t improve strength and power. He urges running experts treating masters runners to implement strength training such as single leg hops, weighted heel raises, weighted single leg squats and weighted deadlifts. Lastly, Matt stresses that he advocates incorporating weighted exercises into ADLs that specifically addresses the runners impairments. For example if a runner is lacking plantarflexion strength Matt might have them perform a single leg heel raise with a 30 pound kettlebell while brushing their teeth.
Listen To The Full Podcast Episode Here:
Doctors Of Running
During his time in PT school Matt founded Doctors Of Running. Many in the running community are familiar with Doctors Of Running for their reviews on the latest running shoes. During our interview Matt talked about how he became frustrated as a runner with not knowing what shoe to purchase or run in. Doctors Of Running developed into a trusted resource for many runners to learn about how shoes can impact musculoskeletal health, running performance and running biomechanics. Matt and his growing team hold a weekly podcast along with blogs and reference guides detailing shoe reviews and the latest research on running technology. Learn more about how to get in touch with Matt and Doctors Of Running below.
During our interview Matt also discussed how to recommend footwear to runners. He pointed out that prescribing a specific shoe for runners can be helpful but more often suggests recommending shoe characteristics to guide runners in their footwear purchases. Furthermore, footwear recommendations should be correlated to a runner’s biomechanics, anatomical makeup and gait analysis findings. Matt went on to explain how it’s tempting for running experts to prescribe a Hoka Clifton, Asics Gel Kayano or Altra Torin but often runners prefer to select the specific brand of shoe that fits their foot comfortably. Therefore, Matt makes recommendations of purchasing guidelines for running footwear such as “moderate heel drop, moderate cushion and high stability” or “low heel drop, minimal cushion and neutral stability”. This ecourages runners not only select a comfortable fitting shoe but one that also improves their running gait.
How To Become More Confident In Your Running Gait Analysis
Performing a running gait analysis can be intimidating for many clinicians. If you are interested in learning more about running shoes and providing a running gait analysis check out our continuing education course “The Essentials of Running Gait Analysis”. In this course you will learn how to analyze running gait and become a running expert. If you have questions about this content or the course feel free to reach out to us to discuss and we will personally respond to your questions.
Helpful Resources and Links:
Contact info: [email protected]
To get involved with Matt's PhD research make sure to reach out to him via email as he is still looking for participants for his study.
If you haven’t done so already grab the “Running Shoe Reference Guide” to help runners find the right shoes: