Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Running form analysis - August 2014

I have shot another video to analyze my current running gait. Not that I would be unhappy with my current form (injury free for the past two years) but I am pretty sure there are always ways to improve and work on efficiency and speed.

I have received quite a feedback from Barefoot and Minimalist Runners group on Facebook.
It is a lot of useful information so I am listing it bellow:

I'll take a stab...One of the first things I notice is a significant crossover gait pattern, placing increased workload to the lateral/posterior hip (thinking glute medius). You either don't have enough strength or stability to control this force, and is shown with a contralateral (opposite) side hip drop and/or lateral shift. This is more pronounced when loading on the right leg. You seem to compensate for this also with a more pronounced arm swing on the left to help with balance through the right loading phase. A lot of other thoughts that are also very speculative as their could be several reasons structurally, stability or strength that could contribute. Interested in hearing others' thoughts.

Crossover gait.

In Michael Sandler's book he talks about upper body form a lot. I feel like that topic is often overlooked yet extremely important. I have focused, myself, on upper body form a lot with great results. One thing that jumps out to me is the way you are crossing your arms in front of your body. Try to make your arms move only forward and backward, parallel to the direction you are running. This will counter balance your legs and eliminate unnecessary work to stabilize the twisting motion you are creating. Also one arm is being held out more than the other. Make sure to check in with your form throughout the run. Keep your shoulders rolled back, core engaged, and hands up high.

I've definitely noticed that people's arms and hands mimic their legs and feet. I even spread my fingers every so often to help spread my toes.

I say - it's too much stress in the running form. Upper body totally fixed; it could be seen that impact goes from down to head. Perhaps it's because "on the camera" run, however there is crossover pattern (as already said) twisting torso and makes the run not nice and flowing. Just try first to flow-in on soft layers and then go to pawed road. But in a overall, a great effort - just relax a bit.

Thanks everyone for such a great feedback I can definitely see the crossover gait as well. The thing is I have been running barefoot for four years (around 750 miles a year), last two years with no issues, no injuries, no discomforts. Did 2 trail half marathons, three road half marathons with no problems, easy recovery. All of that skin to ground. I never experienced any IT band pains or strains. So I am bit puzzled over here. Perhaps my camera setup for this shot (using really extreme zoom lens) distorts the footage and some of what looks like crossing over is just an optical illusion. I have another video (2 months older) where I used moving camera and normal lens, should be showing my gait more clearly. Please check it out as well.

Daniel - looks good to me as usual! I hold my arms the same way. As a fellow barefoot runner and going on 5 years, I say don't change things to much. Your resume of barefoot running is similar to mine, and you are injury free!

Thanks Adam Gentile, that is encouraging to hear. I may stick to the old "If it ain't broke, don't fix it" then !

I have seen your videos over at BRS, and to me your form has always been consistent.

Thanks for posting this Daniel. It is always interesting seeing other people run. A few points come to mine. You're not hurting and you've run a lot. You must be doing something right. I love the Gait Guys, but I'm not sure it is a crossover gait. Your "cross-over" looks like it's happening primarily below the knee. The Gait Guys show it as a hip level dropping issue. Your upper body is not doing any sway. If I was to pick on one thing, I'd be curious about your right foot overpronating. I think you then have a hard time supinating your foot before push off. Tough to tell from video, but a guess is that you might be excessively externally rotating your hip on push off. This would cause your landing foot to come across the midline. Also curious what your posture looks like not running.

Many here mention The Gait Guys. Back in 2011 they actually took one of my running videos for their analysis. Back then they concluded "that the right foot is spun out", "the left arm seems to cross the body more than the right" and that I got ""most likely some pelvic asymmetry". They also mentioned a minor crossover. For anyone interested here is the article

Brad Kuchinka thank you for the feedback. As for my right foot overpronating, I am aware of that. The Gait Guys say my 'foot progression angle' is increased. "The increased right foot progression angle will often accelerate pronation and increase its degree." I am far from being perfect But trying to improve what I can. Thanks again !

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