Tilman von der Linde on The Kenyan Running Form

The Kenyans “need for speed” is the cause of their long dominace over the distance running world. They may be skinny but the skinny on their speed is in their running form.

Olympic and World Gold Medalist, Robert Esmie, www.airblastoff.com who trains speed demons at his facility in Surrey, explains that running forms and foot strike patterns vary depending on speed.

Going Faster 

The higher the speed, the greater the tendency of a forefoot landing pattern. To go faster lean forward from the ankles and your body weight will work with you and propel you forward as if in a slow natural fall, making your running form and effort more efficient.

This small forward shift in body weight will also cause a small shift in your foot strike pattern and transfer some of the muscle work from the quads to the calf muscles. Give yourself some time for the body to adjust as not doing so may risk an achilles tendon injury.

Going Slower

The body is naturally lazy and will gravitate to what ever gives it the best cushioning, so the greater the heel cushion in the shoe, the greater the tendency to land on the heel.

With your weight landing on the heel you are not only prone to more knee and leg injuries but the greater impact forces on your body are essentially slowing you down.

Tilman von der Linde, RMT.

Muscles in Motion – Vancouver

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