Saturday, 12 June 2010

Touch and Go #12

Posted by speedygeoff on Saturday, June 12, 2010 with 1 comment
Practical Implications: What do we learn from all of these studies?
 It lends credence to the idea that footstrike is important when we are concerned with speed and speed only. There is a tendency for faster runners to adopt a non-heel strike in a variety of events. In addition, these foot strike types allow for shorter ground contact times, which also correlate well with speed. One other variable to consider is how that foot strike occured? It's impossible to know but where the heel strike took place is incredibly important. There is a big difference between striking close to under your hips to striking way out in front of you. Perhaps we should consider looking at foot strike in terms of where it occurs in relation to your center of mass, instead of where it occurs on the foot.

Using this data, I’d recommend a switch to a more midfoot or forefoot running style if speed is your main concern.

Secondly, these studies provide some interesting data on fatigue and foot strike. Seeing that ground contact times lengthen, some training should be done to avoid this decrease. I’ve written an entire article (and done a presentation, which I have not posted yet) on a related phenomenon, Strength endurance work, that explains some of the ways to combat this fatigue. We need to train the body to maintain force production (and muscle fiber recruitment) under heavy fatigue. This means start off with being able to increase force production, move to being able to produce force quickly, then move to being able to produce force in heavy fatigued conditions.

Basically, strength endurance work combined with plyometric and power training would seem the best way to train for this type of fatigue resistance. In practical terms:

- Strength Training -> Power training/ Sprint training -> Strength Endurance (Circuits/hills) -> Strength Endurance under fatigued conditions (hard circuits/ 200m reps at 800m pace w/ bounding in between)

from Science of Running by Steve Magness. To be continued...

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1 comment:

  1. I is looking a tad red in the face. And you were correct - looks like another heel landing coming up - but as that bit of the road is downhill, you're excused ;)