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Achilles tendon: running barefoot vs running shod?

Discussion in 'Biomechanics, Sports and Foot orthoses' started by Simon Spooner, Feb 4, 2010.

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    A post from the fat lad got me thinking http://www.podiatry-arena.com/podiatry-forum/showpost.php?p=134514&postcount=12: Alexander's work points to the Achilles tendon acting as a spring during running gait- storing and returning elastic energy. Given that when running barefoot, a forefoot strike pattern may be more common and while running in shoes a rearfoot strike pattern appears to be more common, what influence does the strike pattern have on the ability of the achilles to store and return elastic energy?
  2. I would assume that forefoot strike would place more load on the achilles and therefore more energy returned, but there could be a chance that the elastic deformation could become plastic ( if I remember correctly and then something about creep).

  3. So, faster loading = stiffer tendon. Does stiffer achilles tendon in a forefoot striker = greater "braking power" to STJ pronation?
  4. Im guesing so from Craig post in my achilles thread, he said

    so I´m thinking that the same must occur with FF striking
  5. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    The Effect of Foot Strike Pattern on Achilles Tendon Load During Running.
    Almonroeder T, Willson JD, Kernozek TW.
    Ann Biomed Eng. 2013 May 3.
  6. Sicknote

    Sicknote Active Member

    Nothing, if the tendon is overly stiff (vast majority of the population).

    Your talking as if everybody has compliant tendons, far, far from it.
  7. efuller

    efuller MVP

    With forefoot striking the center of pressure of ground reaction force will tend to be more lateral to the STJ axis than with rearfoot striking. So, there is a competition from the direct supination moment from the tendon versus the pronation moment from the ground. So, you might not get any "breaking power" about the STJ in terms of supination moment from the Achilles tendon.

  8. efuller

    efuller MVP

    The heel lift might mess with balance. That is when you stand on the lift you might choose to lean forward or backward more as compared to without the lift. (This is a choice.) If you chose to lean back, moving the center of pressure more proximaly, you would decrease the pronation moment from the ground and this might be the cause of change in supination resistance.

    The moment at the STJ from the Achilles is just a by product of the moment created at the ankle. The Achilles is first an ankle plantar flexor. I could see how it would be adaptive to also provide some supination moment with the average stj axis extending from the heel out to, roughly, the first met head. As ankle plantar flexion shifts the center of pressure anteriorly the angulation of the STj axis will make the Achilles an indirect pronator.

  9. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    The Relationship Between Achilles Tendon Moment Arm and Running Economy in Rearfoot and Forefoot Runners
    Allison H. Gruber, Brian R. Umberger, Ross H. Miller, Joseph Hamill
    Presented at 2013 ACSM Mtg

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