POUNDING PAVEMENT BY HEEL OR TOE
Each style of running has its advantages and disadvantages; whether your form involves your heel touching the ground first or your toes. There was a test going on at the Tampere Research Center of Sports Medicine in Tampere, Finland. Here they used motion capture technology to test the running form of 286 people who played sports. The test showed that 19 of the women and 4 of the men struck the ground with their forefeet in their stride. It helped to show that whether male or female, slow or not, majority of runners strike the ground with the heel first. Also 2,000 runners that participated in the Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon were filmed in the middle of the event, to have their form analyzed; 94 percent of this group were heel strikers. That group included some of the fastest runners. Lastly there was another marathon where they filmed them six miles into the event; here they found that almost 90 percent were heel strikers. Mostly of the other 10 percent had shifted to a heel-strike form near the end of the race, as they got tired.
It was also found that landing on your heel form, more force moved through their knee joint. These people that landed on their heels, mostly jarred their knees. On the other hand, the people that landed on their forefoot were just affected differently. They had 20 percent more force moving through their ankles and achilles' tendon. So apparently there is no way to escape the cumulative impact that running will have on your ankles or legs. I think that switching up your form every now and then would probably be the best thing for runners to keep yourself from always putting pressure on the same area. I also think that running on your heels would be more effective, especially if you plan to run a great distance, just so you can keep a good pace and not get tired so fast. People that run a lot should take these facts into consideration; it could be very beneficial to their health.
October 17, 2013