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Find out how to prepare your body for going off-road and prevent the potential injuries that come from trail running.
For a variety of reasons, many runners trade in the pavement for dirt trails as they opt to swap out the hard surface for shade and softer ground. Trail running offers many benefits, including less impact on the body, increased variety, and gorgeous scenery. When the transition is made properly, switching to the trails can rejuvenate your running plan and get you fired up for a hard season of training. When done poorly, it can leave you sidelined for much of the warm season with injuries.
Switching up your training from primarily concrete-based to dirt and grass presents your body with a slew of new challenges. No longer is each footstep on even terrain. Twists, turns, switch-backs, and rocks dot your path through the trees. To prepare yourself for these new demands and make it through the trail season injury-free, follow these steps to build balance and strength.