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Heel Striking Leads to Injury? (Read 1212 times)

    This study is a bit misleading too.  There is actually a difference between "landing on the heel" vs. "heel touching first".  Classifying and defining mid-foot, forefoot and heel landing really becomes vague and useless.  

     

    Yep, which makes the correlation between something vague (footstrike) and something else which could have a million other causes (injury) pretty much, well, yeah.

     

    Run a lot of different speeds over a lot of different terrain and guess what: you will have a lot of different footstrikes.

     

    When starting out, especially if they are older and out of shape, runners have a tendency to run one speed over more or less flat terrain. Talk about the way to develop an unnatural footstrike! It's likely going to lead to injury, whether you try to strike on the forefoot or the heel or whatever, because the runner is simply weak and doing the same thing over and over again.

     

    MacDougall, who is sorta at ground zero of all this footstrike/natural running/barefooting stuff (great book, by the way, that Born to Run) has recently be advocating what coaches have been doing for years: simple running drills that strengthen the leg, develop coordination, and teach the body to run in a variety of manners.

     

    It is positive that people have begun consciously thinking about how their feet land, and I have no doubt that this has helped, as many people have stated on this thread. My sense is that it helps, at least in part, because it produces mindfulness about how you are running; you start paying attention and listening to your body--your feet and other things, too.


    Spring- wishful thinking

       

       

      Run a lot of different speeds over a lot of different terrain and guess what: you will have a lot of different footstrikes.

       

       +1

       

      Jogged a 50K this weekend, started out very icy with very little traction was was doing very small steps landing practically completely flat on the foot to limit slipping. 

       

      Later, footing got better energy was good - the stride lengthened.  There were people out taking pictures.  Progression of shots show clearly rolling from heel to toe.  Not smacking flat on the heel or landing right on the toe, just rolling. 

       

      Near the end, it was getting sloppy and I was getting heavy legs.  When it got muddy I tended to use mainly toe -less mud contact to work against you, but when it was flat I was slipping into heel strike doing the "ultra shuffle" and I was no longer focused on how I landed.

        Food for thought - Click.

        I dont sweat. I ooze liquid awesome.

        sport jester


        Biomimeticist

          Ostriches have a femur, its just very short to generate maximum leverage of the limb, which is what humans are pretty lousy at.

           

          (pg770)

          http://www.rvc.ac.uk/sml/People/documents/SmithJAnat2006Musclearchitectureostrichpelvic.pdf

           

          That's the whole point I've made, that your footstrike should match your terrain, and optimum mechanics of uneven terrain, steep inclines both uphill and downhill, or flat surfaces require different landing patterns. The unique part is that we can vary how we land to best optimize running economy.

           

          Given that an ostrich or T-Rex is a bipedal athlete in the truest sense of biology (that they have no limbs in counterbalance function) also plays a role in their running mechanics.

           

          I focused on ostriches because they can do something humans can't; which is increase in speed during the curves of a track.

          And underlying anything I write is that the last track coach to study deer and ostriches trained runners to set world records in the 1,500 meters, 3K, and shave a full 42 seconds from the previous world record of the 10K.

          Experts said the world is flat

          Experts said that man would never fly

          Experts said we'd never go to the moon

           

          Name me one of those "experts"...

           

          History never remembers the name of experts; just the innovators who had the guts to challenge and prove the "experts" wrong

          sport jester


          Biomimeticist

            Food for thought - Click.

             And if you read the study meathods, he had the test subjects running only 20 meters before hitting the force plate.

             

            Why doesn't he put the plate at the end of a marathon race and see how humans run? I"m sure you can agree that 20 meters is a much easier running distance than 20 miles....

            Experts said the world is flat

            Experts said that man would never fly

            Experts said we'd never go to the moon

             

            Name me one of those "experts"...

             

            History never remembers the name of experts; just the innovators who had the guts to challenge and prove the "experts" wrong

              Food for thought - Click.

              What I'd really like to see is the heel, midfoot and forefoot strikers normalized for cadence.  Just looking at the last set of photos, the heel-striker appears to be loping.  If true, then of course his strike forces will be higher!  Have the man shuffle along at 180 strides/min and heel-strike, then compare that data to the 180 strides/min forefoot-striker's.

              “Everything you need is already inside.” -- Bill Bowerman

                Somewhat related to what Jeff had mentioned in another thread, for distances like the marathon etc, is it possible to maintain a particular footstrike through out the marathon, especially a question to forefoot / midfoot runners who may start out that way in the race? Is fatigue and type of footstrike just correlated or is there causality as well from the former to the latter?

                One of the links posted (in this thread or a related one) had data that forefoot- and midfoot-striking runners tended to drift toward heel-striking as the marathon wore on.

                “Everything you need is already inside.” -- Bill Bowerman

                  I focused on ostriches because they can do something humans can't; which is increase in speed during the curves of a track.

                  Again, I really do think you sometimes bring up an interesting stuff but, the more you try to speak with authority, the more you seem to shoot yourself in the foot.  

                   

                  There was a young Japanese marathon runner in the late 1960s and early 1970s who finished 2nd to Derek Clayton's epic 2:08 run (he did 2:11) and went on, in 1970, became the first Japanese to win prestigious Fukuoka marathon in then the third fastest marathon time in history, 2:10:38.  He was one of the favorite to win Munich Olympic marathon but hurt his back sleeping on a bed that's too soft.  After Munich, he went into a slump and couldn't run well for a couple of years.  He decided to focus on his running form and analyzed a whole bunch of "stuff" about his own running.  He measured his stride length and stride frequency as well as the speed for each stride, etc.  He noticed that he was actually speeding up on the curve around the track.  He went on to make his third Olympic team in 1976 though, by then, he was long passed his prime, finished 30 something.

                   

                  The reason why Fosbery flop had become the main stream of high jump is because it is mechanically more advantageous.  One of the advantages of the flop is its approach.  The reason why they run along a curve is that they could take advantage of gravity to pick up the speed a lot more easily than the previous straight running approach in the old "roll" style.

                  sport jester


                  Biomimeticist

                    Nobby,

                     

                    The proverb is that "exceptions prove the rule". Of course someone is going to figure out how to increase speed in the curves of a track. I'm not saying its impossible. It requres undestanding how to optimize an intoed form. Physicians will tell you that its a medical malady to treat, rather than a running technique to take advantage of.

                    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8784703

                     

                     If anyone figures out on their own how to do it great. But to search any track technique or even cross country running books for a referene to it, is almost impossible. To train in the technique is non existant.

                     

                    so the contrast stands, why do human sprinters naturaly modify their gait to run intoed as an adaptation to curve running, while theropods have been doing it for millions of years?

                    Experts said the world is flat

                    Experts said that man would never fly

                    Experts said we'd never go to the moon

                     

                    Name me one of those "experts"...

                     

                    History never remembers the name of experts; just the innovators who had the guts to challenge and prove the "experts" wrong

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