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Harvard study- Forefoot strikers have fewer injuries than heel strikers

Discussion in 'Biomechanics, Sports and Foot orthoses' started by Nick Sebastian Caravaggio, Apr 12, 2012.


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    Hey everyone,

    I subscribe to Men's Health magazine which has alot of useful tips and information on physical activity and living the healthy lifestyle. However, today I just received the may issue where there is an article about running faster. One part stuck out at me and I wanted to know what your take is on the subject.

    "Be on the Ball"
    "If you land on your heel, you're almost certainly overstriding." says Alberto Salazar (who is a iconic american marathoner) "You're pounding your leg into the ground with each stride and increasing your risk of injury. When you land on the balls of your feet, you flow with your forward energy"
    A recent study of Harvard runner supports Salazar's theory; it found that forefoot strikers have fewer injuries than heel strikers.

    From Men's Health Magazine, May 2012 pg. 118.

    Has anyone every heard of this study? I would think the opposite is true, in that forefoot strikers would be more prone to injuries. From experience, i haven't come across very many forefoot strikers who are injury free.
     
  2. Craig Payne

    Craig Payne Moderator

    Articles:
    7
  3. Salazar was a great marathoner, but doesn't know what he is talking about in regards to injury frequency and footstrike pattern in runners. Currently, there are probably more runners being injured "trying" to be forefoot strikers upon the advice of ignorant coaches and know-nothing Chi, Pose or Alexander advocates, than there are injuries to those runners who remain rearfoot strikers.
     
  4. Craig Payne

    Craig Payne Moderator

    Articles:
    7
    Not normally wanting to go over old ground as it was well covered in the thread I linked above
    ...but that is a classic example of cherry picking and confirmation bias.

    That study was on 56 runners who were almost elite level. Why did they choose to pick that study and ignore:
     
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