At the Lab we were talking about the importance of a good running stride and the topic of extending your stride length to improve running speed came up. We can write pages on running stride. There are two common technical problems we see one is over-striding and the other is under-striding. We want to find a personalized comfortable balance between the two.
Over-striding occurs when an athlete attempts to outreach their leg length in order to cover more ground. Over-striding causes a significant change in the mechanics of the running action that can range from overextension of the hips, poor foot contact position (heel striking) and a vertical torso.
Under-striding occurs when an athlete takes smaller strides during a run action which can be found in an athlete that may think they are covering more ground by moving their feet more quickly, or by having weakness or tight muscles in the movement chain that will not allow them to reach for ground efficiently or comfortably.
To address both over-striding and under-striding we spend time observing the runner then making corrections through direct communication and running drills. With regards to under-striding, an athlete may lack strength and flexibility in key muscles involved in running, which can be addressed via resistance training, flexibility and mobility activities to improve on this technical error as well as improving both runners power and speed.
At Performance Strength Lab we offer both Gait Analysis (running form) as well as well as Treadmill test to determine Running Zones based on Heart Rate, Rate Of Perceived Exertion and Pace. Contact us today for help reaching your running goals!