Biomechanics - High Peaks Elite Distance Camp

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Running Biomechanics
High Peaks Elite Distance Camp
Correct Running Stride
 90-93 steps per minute (one foot)
 Foot landing under center of mass
 Landing on middle to forefoot of shoe
Incorrect Running Stride
 Less than 90 steps per minute (one foot)
 Negative Results:
 Over-striding, too much time airborne, wasted energy
fighting gravity, harder pounding of joints, greater chance
of injury
 Landing on heal of foot (“breaking” forward movement…
wasted energy!)
 Not landing over center of mass, pushing mass in a
negative/backwards direction… wasted energy!
Running Mechanics
Biomechanics: A study of motion
Purpose of studying biomechanics:
 Distance running is a natural activity, so many coaches
and athletes give little or no thought to technique
 From our evolution (crawling- walking- running) rarely
has anyone been instructed on how to run properly
 There is a right way to run, yet we often abide by the
philosophy “if it works don’t fix it.”
 Running styles are highly individualized, but subtle
mechanical changes can make a difference in a race or
in preventing injury
“Lingo” of Running Mechanics
Specificity in Training:
A focus and direction where practices prepare for
maximum racing performance (ex. Workouts must include
racing speeds)
Effectiveness:
Maximum benefit from energy expenditure (ex. All out
sprint, trying to minimize the elapsed time)
Lingo continued
Efficiency:
Maximizing conservation of energy expenditure (ex.
Running 5:00 mile with minimum effort). In other words,
ECONOMY
Linear Motion: Motion in a straight line
Speed (velocity) variables:
A distance traveled in a specific amount of time (stride
length x stride frequency)
Lingo Continued
Center of Gravity:
Where an object’s mass is considered to be concentrated
Acceleration:
A positive rate of change in velocity or speed
Laws of Motion:
1) Inertia (body at rest stays at rest)
2) Momentum (change in direction same as force)
3) Action Reaction (every action has equal reaction)
Distance Running Style
Posture:
“Run Tall”
Eyes and head
Shoulders “relaxed”
Arm position and motion- “natural” carriage
Hips alignment- straight ahead
Distance Running Style
Stride:
Knee strike and stride angle
Foreleg swing/forward swing
Stride length- level head
Foot strike: heel striker, forefoot striker
Back swing, toe off, extension phase
Variables that Affect Running Style
Individualization/Coordination
Strength/Endurance/Maturity
Fatigue/Stress
Footwear/Orthotics
***Work on mechanics when stressed
Proper Form
 Upper Body:
Run Tall or Proud: Head & eyes looking straight ahead
Head still; neck and head in a straight line
Chest and shoulders proud
Arm drive
Arms relaxed <90 degree angle moving forward and back
in synchronization with opposite leg
Tight tummy
Proper Form
 Lower Body
Hips tucked forward
Good knee drive
Mid to high heel recovery
Dorsi-Flexion in ankle
Mid to Forefoot landing under center of mass
Legs moving front to back, not crossing over midline
Poor Running Form
 Upper Body:
Hunched over, bent at the waist, leaning too far back
Head tipped back/forward/down, shoulder roll
Arms excessively crossing midline
No arm drive, arms locked <90 degree position
 Lower Body:
Butt sticking out, little/no heel recovery, overstriding
Landing on heel, not landing over center of mass
Feet crossing midline, over/under striding
Running Form Evaluation Checklist
I)
Non-stressed Running Style:
Overall General Appearance
Relaxed, Tall, Upright, Efficient
Center of Gravity (Support Phase)
Foot Strike
Knee Position
Hip Posture
Torso Posture
Arm/Shoulder Carriage(shoulder, arms, elbow-wrist, hands)
Head and Neck Position
II) Stress Running Form Analysis

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