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World renowned speed coach Bill Begg shares his vast knowledge of skating every week in his "Ask Bill Begg!" column on the Inline Planet.

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May 18, 2011

What To Do About Body Aches and Pains?

QHi, Bill: I am a 53-year-old inline speed skater. I'm in good shape, not overweight, and have been skating for 15 years. But lately my hips and legs ache when I walk, though not when I skate. Any ideas on how I can go pain-free? Thanks. - Carol in California

Hi, Carol: These days, 53 is no longer considered old. But your bones, muscles and joints may be feeling the years. They may be worn and inflexible — and that can cause discomfort.

One thing that may help is stretching after you skate. Stretching after a workout keeps your muscles limber and prevents them from tightening up, which can cause pain.

If you are already doing plenty of stretching, try a post-workout soak in a spa or hot tub. Not only will this relax your muscles, but it will also give you a good night's sleep.

Your soreness could be the result of a flaw in your skating technique. Or it could have something to do with the condition of your skating surface. (A hard bumpy surface could make you sore.) But without knowing more about your skating, I couldn't say.

Since your aches and pains only started recently, you should probably check in with your doctor. Maybe there's something else going on that needs attention.

By the way, you are not the only skater who is more comfortable skating than walking.

My wife, Cheryl, was a world champion roller speed skater and trained very hard. But she found that one hour on her feet at the shopping mall wore her out more than skating a marathon. When you skate more than you walk, that can happen.

Cheers, Bill

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