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International Trails Symposium Scheduled to be in Arizona in 2013

Redding, California, Nov. 15 - /EWire/ -- AMERICAN TRAILS PRESS RELEASE For Immediate Release Contact: American Trails: Candace Mitchell at (530) 547-2060 or Arizona State Parks: Ellen Bilbrey at (602) 228-8518.


(Redding, CA - November 15, 2011) - Do you ever wonder who the people are that promote, plan, and build the vast trail systems in cities and rural areas that make communities more desirable because of those amenities? Arizona will be hosting hundreds of trails leaders during the American Trails International Trails Symposium (ITS) scheduled for April 14 to 17, 2013 at the Yavapai Nation's Radisson Fort McDowell in Fountain Hills, Arizona.

Bob Searls, Chairman of the American Trails Board says, "Trails and greenways have gone mainstream from Scottsdale to Toledo, from Paris to Shenzhen. In the remaking of urban America they are a new circulatory system nourishing heart and mind, entrepreneur and shopkeeper. Trails and greenways are a wise community investment and a must have to thrive and compete! Arizona has been at the forefront of this movement with leading edge projects like the Arizona Trail, the Grand Canyon Greenway and the Tucson trail network. The American Trails International Symposium will be the world's leading place to share vital and valuable knowledge, re-energize and support trails systems.

"We're thrilled to be able to announce this great venue for our 2013 Symposium," said Pam Gluck, Executive Director of American Trails. "The Arizona State Trails System has more than 5,000 miles of mapped and well-used trails that are used by hundreds of thousands of people each year. The Sonoran Desert near Fountain Hills is the perfect environment to teach the best practices for backcountry, rural, and urban trails development and how to build trails for communities to enhance lifestyles and keep residents healthy and fit." According to Gluck, "Arizona attracts outdoor enthusiasts from around the world who come to experience canyoneering, paddling, mountain biking, hiking, horseback riding, trail motorcycling, snowmobiling, off-highway vehicle exploring. The Symposium team has pledged to provide trails professionals with the most exclusive trails experiences the state has to offer. The concepts for the 21st Trails Symposium are magnificent and will draw trails and greenway builders and advocates from around the world."

The 2013 American Trails International Trails Symposium will be hosted by: Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation, Arizona State Parks, Fountain Hills & Fort McDowell Convention Bureau, Central Arizona Project, Scottsdale Convention and Visitors Bureau, and the Mesa Convention & Visitors Bureau, as well as many businesses from around the world.

Join the 2013 International Trails Symposium by becoming a volunteer, sponsor, or exhibitor and plan to spend at least a week or maybe two in Arizona exploring and learning at the nation's largest event for public, private, and volunteer trails leaders and enthusiasts. For more information contact, call (530) 547-2060, or visit the website at Follow American Trails at or

WHO IS AMERICAN TRAILS? American Trails is a national nonprofit advocacy organization working on behalf of ALL trail interests. Their website,, is the world's most comprehensive online go-to source for planning, building, designing, funding, managing, enhancing, and supporting trails and greenways. American Trails supports local, regional, and long-distance trails and greenways, in backcountry, rural, or urban areas. Their goal is to support America's trails by finding common ground and promoting cooperation among all trail interests.

For more information:

Ellen Bilbrey (602)228-8518 Arizona Host Committee or Candace Mitchell at American Trails 530-547-2060



I'd like to see more ultra acitrles on here. I'm training to run my first ultra (a 50 miler) in October, and it's hard to find the specific information on ultras you can find on marathons. Good article.

February 13, 2012, 10:18 AM

i used to run a lot of trails when i was in grad and med sochol 13-15 miles at least 5-6 times/week. a buddy of mine ran with me occasionally and would tweek his ankles just about every time. he called the trails an ankle minefield because he felt like he blew up his ankles every time we'd run.a big difference i noticed between us is that he kept his usual heel-strike and long pavement running stride; probably was extending his foot strike well in front of his knees. on the other hand, my trail stride was generally short and compact, landing more on the forefoot, and keeping my feet more under my body. although i played years of basketball and suffered several very severe ankle sprains, i ran thousands of miles on those trails without turning my ankles. i think the difference was in experience and the technique that came with all those miles of running trails. my concern about wearing ankle braces is several fold. first of all, they may allow you to get away with bad trail running technique, or give you a false sense of security and set you up for a bad injury. let's face it, there's only so much an ankle brace is going to do if you turn your ankle with enough force, and you're set up to turn it with more force if you're using poor technique. secondly, after any sprained ankle, working to build up the the stabilizing muscles and proprioception is important to compensate for the loss of the stabilizing force of the ligaments that have been stretched or torn. i think they're an unhealthy crutch.i have been trying to transition to minimalist running, but haven't had much chance to trail run since i started (was nursing an injury or two before deployment, and now no trails here in afghanistan on a military base). if a minimalist shoe helps you to strike more on your forefoot, be more mindful of your foot placement, keeps your feet more under your body, and shortens up your stride/increases your cadence (all of which i have heard proponents of minimalist shoes say at one time or another, and which in my experience i think i'm finding to be true), then they very well may help someone be a better trail runner. to stlouiscardinal: i'm an AD military doctor. i've had ankle surgery twice and had to give up most of my running. i'm now 35, i run at most once or twice a month, usually less when i'm home, but i mountain bike or swim almost every day. i can't run my 1.5 mile PT test as fast as i did 10 years ago, but i still run a respectable time in the low to mid 8 minute range. here's what i tell my patients who want to start running: 1. i'd recommend you lose some weight before you start doing any serious running. this is probably obvious, but if anyone were to throw a 25 lbs rucksack on their back (much less 70 lbs), it'd be harder to run, be more strenuous on muscles and joints, and slow you down. you're more set up to hurt yourself, whether acutely or by overuse-type injuries. get rid of the backpack. your diet is going to be extremely important. there are all kinds of diet plans out there, but i like michael pollan's advice in food rules. simple, common sense guidelines to eating better.2. don't hurt yourself. i see this all the time. i started running more in order to get ready for my PT test and now my (fill in the blank) hurts and i can't run. this may be where form does matter, and maybe doing more barefoot or chi running or whatever might help (a different debate). running is a higher impact activity for many people; if you're one of those, find other cardiovascular things to do (bike, elliptical, swim, stair-climber, etc.) that are low-impact (especially if you're overweight). also obvious, but if you hurt yourself at the start, you're going to have to sit things out until you get better and you may set yourself up for more wt gain, not to mention you'll lose whatever gains in conditioning and morale you might have already achieved.3. improve your cardiovascular endurance. CV endurance translates well (not perfectly, but well) from one type of activity to another (e.g. my mountain biking to still running OK times for a PT test). if you set the resistance high enough and keep the RPMs up enough, you can burn almost as many calories/hour on an elliptical as you can on a treadmill, but the elliptical is generally much less painful to your joints. 4. start easy and gradually increase. while the saying too many too soon for giving your child vaccinations is wrong and stupid, it's true for getting back into shape and running. i wish i'd given more heed to this when i first tried out Five Fingers ran 5 miles on trails up and down steep heels and strained my calf so bad i couldn't run for 3-4 months afterwards. don't be wrong and stupid, like i was. good luck.

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