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Sports and the 4 Spring Systems.

Discussion in 'Biomechanics, Sports and Foot orthoses' started by Sicknote, Jul 12, 2011.

  1. Sicknote

    Sicknote Active Member

  2. Griff

    Griff Moderator

    Sick note,

    Perhaps now is the time to be transparent about where you are coming from. You stated on one of your early posts that you were a student doing an essay. Its not looking as if this was true (or if it is you are clearly not an undergraduate Podiatry student).

    A few posters on here are less likely to converse with individuals who hide behind a pseudonym. However most are highly unlikely to engage with someone who comes across as if they have a hidden agenda. If you are actually here to learn (which remains to be seen) then you may get frustrated when you notice you are being ignored.
  3. David Wedemeyer

    David Wedemeyer Well-Known Member

    :good: Ian!

    Here are some Gracovetsky articles without the extraneous bits.

    P.S. Sicknote Ian is absolutely correct. I'm guessing that we know you under another name on PA given your interest in barefeet and Slinky's?;)

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jul 13, 2011
  4. Sicknote

    Sicknote Active Member

    What brought me these forums initially was trying to find the answer to how much propulsion force the feet primarily give to the body in relation to every other muscle/body part when running/sprinting. Have I found the answer?. Not really. I believe the feet are incredibly underrated in terms of just how much propulsion force they can actually produce through specialized strengthening.

    My opinions may differ from others who believe there opinion is the be all end all, hence why I may get peoples backs up.

    Nobody on the internet has been banned from more forums than me (11 forums), just through voicing my opinions, questioning everything & trying to find the correct answers. Has it been worth it?, most certainly.

    I'm here to learn. If other opinions don't stack up I need to question.
  5. David Wedemeyer

    David Wedemeyer Well-Known Member

    Therein may lie the answer to your futile search; you're trying to fit the research to your belief instead of forming a belief based on the evidence (certainly implies an agenda). That is contrary to learning, I would term that approach dogma.

    I always say "aim high". This is an academic forum Sicknote and if you care to have an opinion and to have that opinion taken seriously you need to reveal your name and professional affiliation for others to find you credible or worthy of their time. Otherwise as Ian pointed out the silence will be deafening...
  6. Let's make it an even dozen....I'm sure nobody here would mind....
  7. lol.:hammer::bash:
  8. Dana Roueche

    Dana Roueche Well-Known Member

    Kevin, spoken by a true professional on an esteemed academic forum.

    Sicknote, I have revealed my name and background. I could care less if people know who I am. But I do regret revealing my background because of the immaturity of many of the people who post on this forum. When my opinions differ from their opinions, as soon as I start making a better supporting argument, the discussion most often turns into personal attacks and my background is used as the basis of those attacks.

    With the gross lack of data and supporting research, more often than not, all we have are our opinions. Those opinions are based on experience and experience is anecdotal. Like it or not the very people accusing others of basing their opinions on anecdotal evidence are just as guilty. The difference is that they use acronyms after their names so it qualifies them to make anecdotal opinions. What ever you do, don't try to point out that their view is opinionated or anecdotal unless you expect to be personally attacked by the many immature people who consider themselves professional on this forum. The post Kevin just made is EXACTLY what I'm referring to.

  9. Sicknote

    Sicknote Active Member

    But it's not a futile search.

    There are muscles & tendons in the foot (the tibialis posterior, peroneus longus, peroneus brevis, plantar fascia etc) which aid in propulsive forces. The more you strengthen a certain muscle, the more force it generates.

    My question was: How much propulsion force can the feet primarily give to the body in relation to every other muscle/body part when running/sprinting?.

    My agenda is, I want to learn. Is it worthwhile me doing additional isolated strengthening exercises for my feet to aid in generating propulsive forces or shouldn't I bother?. How do people rate the feet as a unit in generating force for forward propulsion?.

    I haven't seen the evidence, all I know is there are muscles & tendons in the foot (the tibialis posterior, peroneus longus, peroneus brevis, plantar fascia etc) which MUST SURELY aid in propulsive forces.
  10. David Wedemeyer

    David Wedemeyer Well-Known Member

    I think I've found the answer to your quest Sick:

    Muscular Force in Running Turkeys: The Economy of Minimizing Work
    Thomas J. Roberts*, Richard L. Marsh, Peter G. Weyand and C. Richard Taylor †
    Science 21 February 1997: Vol. 275 no. 5303 pp. 1113-1115

    "During running, muscles and tendons must absorb and release mechanical work to maintain the cyclic movements of the body and limbs, while also providing enough force to support the weight of the body. Direct measurements of force and fiber length in the lateral gastrocnemius muscle of running turkeys revealed that the stretch and recoil of tendon and muscle springs supply mechanical work while active muscle fibers produce high forces. During level running, the active muscle shortens little and performs little work but provides the force necessary to support body weight economically. Running economy is improved by muscles that act as active struts rather than working machines."

    Gobble it up amigo ;)
  11. Sicknote

    Sicknote Active Member

    Thankyou David.

    Here is something you might find interesting.

    Elastic tendons let ostriches run faster using less calories.

    Original Link: http://www.beginrunning.com/fitness/elastic-tendons-ostriches-run-faster-less-calories/#axzz1IkNUTOGZ

  12. efuller

    efuller MVP

    If you want to read a good series of articles on where the body develops the power of motion I would recommend the articles that David Winter has written on the concept of joint power. There is some real science there.

  13. CraigT

    CraigT Well-Known Member

    I do respect your opinion and appreciate your views as an experiences runner. You have your views based on your experience.
    However, do you really think that the value of your anecdotal experience of running injuries is the same as someone like Kevin's, or any other health professional that is contributing on this site? These are people who see different individual's every day who pay good money for management of their problems- do you not think that this makes their anecdotal experience just a little more likely to be valuable than yours?

    In addition to this, just the fact that they are on this site discussing mechanics demonstrates that that they are always seeking more information and are not bogged down in dogma. I know that Kevin created a major paradigm shift in thinking with respect to Podiatric biomechanics because he does indeed question the dogma.

    I have been a Podiatrist for nearly 20 years and have treated many thousands of patients. It is an unusual day if I see something I have not seen before, yet I am still learning all the time.
    Is some of my knowledge anecdotal and based on opinions formed from experience? Yep, sure is. But I am certain that it is more valid that your anecdotal experience and sample size of 1.

    Perhaps you should respect that and you will get the respect back.
  14. Well as a word to the unwise - if you dropped the attitude people here are much more likely to help and you will have achieved your goal of getting more information and not getting banned as a bonus.
  15. Dana Roueche

    Dana Roueche Well-Known Member

    Craig thanks, I didn't know there was a value scale behind anecdotal evidence.

    In spite of 20 yrs experience seeing thousands of patients, your sample is grossly biased. It is filled only with people who have injury or pathology. It implies that if your opinions are based on that experience, it will also be biased. It is true that I am a sample size of 1, what I have been trying to suggest is that input from my sample of 1 be included with your sample of thousands. For that matter, until you have information from a significant number of people who can run thousands of miles injury free, your sample and opinions will always be biased.

    What I see on this forum is a very dramatic, one sided, point of view. It comes from spending years and years, seeing thousands of patients all who are pathological. You don't see healthy people and I've seen a great reluctance to include the feedback from healthy people in your sample or point of view.

    You might argue that I (n=1) have remained injury free because of genetics. I would say that is a contributing factor but I would also say that I could quickly injure myself simply by following the training plans or mimicing the running form of several of your clients (n=many) regardless of genetics. You may be an expect at what they are doing wrong but obviously I am doing something different. Do you or anyone else have a grasp on what that is?

    I'm obviously not concerned about gaining the respect of individuals with closed minds. The reason I post here is certainly not for the benefit of the vocal people on this forum. Rather, I post to provide a different point of view to the many who read this forum anonymously and choose to remain publicly silent. What you don't see is behind the posts made to the forum, I get 100's of emails and messages from those reading here. Many aren't members of the Podiatry Arena. but you don't have to be to read the threads. The world is much bigger and broader than the 30 or so active posters on this forum. I will say one thing for sure, the lack of maturity and professionalism displayed by some of the more senior posters does nothing for the integrity and credibility of the Podiatry profession.

  16. Dana:

    Great reply to Craig.:good:

    I know I can be a real pain in the rear sometimes and I readily acknowledge that I come across as being close-minded and over-opinionated to many who follow my posts here on Podiatry Arena. In addition, I know I have been pretty hard on you, which is probably undeserved, so let me publicly apologize to you for my comments which you have found offensive. I'm sorry and I apologize.

    Since we are the same age and you have lots and lots of experience with running and running shoes, I feel you can be a very valuable member-contributor to many on this academic podiatric medical forum. I hope you will continue to participate more actively on this forum and hopefully you could start your own "shoe review" here on Podiatry Arena, something like "Dana's Shoe Review" thread that would allow you to give your objective and subjective comments on the various shoes you have run in and why we might, as podiatrists, either recommend or not recommend these shoes to our patients.

    I am totally serious here and I, for one, would like to stop this stupid bickering between us so that you could put your obvious experience and knowledge to greater use for all those that frequent this forum for its educational content.

    If you would like to contact me privately about these ideas, then feel free.


    Again, I hope you seriously consider this offer as a way to offer your valuable experiences to us as a runner in a fashion that will be positive for all of us.:drinks
  17. Dana Roueche

    Dana Roueche Well-Known Member

    Kevin, thank you. I accept your apology and in return I apologize for my disrespect to you. I too am done with the nonsense, it is just not productive for anyone.

    I greatly value this forum, I have learned an enormous amount in the past 18 months or so and I know I'll continue to learn. I have sincerely been trying to contribute as an example and to provide a point of view that people may not see in their office every day. I know I am a subject of 1 but what is it that makes me a subject of 1? In a sport with injury rates as high as they are, how is it that I can escape the statistics? Not just in the short term but so far for a lifetime.

    I know that people's health and well being are important to you as they are to me. It has only been my hope and intent to share some of the things I have learned to escape injury in an injury prone sport. In spite of not having research to support what I have learned, that does not mean that certain relationships don't exist.

    In spite of me not having medical training, I find podiatry and biomechanics fascinating and have a sincere interest in it. I would hope that you would be encouraged by they fact that I have such a strong interest in YOUR life work.


  18. efuller

    efuller MVP

    Dana, It's our job to make injured people better. Of course that's our point of view. I can see that we may need a different perspective when discussing things like barefoot running in healthy individuals. However, most here on the arena have not said don't run barefoot. I let my children go barefoot or rather I let them choose when they want to wear shoes. My thinking is in line with Craig Payne's thinking. I'm ok with patient's running barefoot, but I don't want them to do it because they read something that misstates what the research concludes.

    I was serious when I asked you what you do when you run to avoid injury. Someone who runs as much as you say you do and has never been injured must be doing something right. Your response of saying it's not that simple was frustrating to me. If you make a conscious decision to train a certain way you should be able to say what you are choosing to do. Do you have a grasp of what you do to prevent injury? I'd really like to know what it is.

    I agree with Kevin that you could probably contribute some very valuable information regarding shoes. I don't do the miles to road test different shoes.

  19. Dana Roueche

    Dana Roueche Well-Known Member

    Eric, just to make sure it is clear, I am not a barefoot runner. I honestly find it very impractical, especially living in a climate that produces a lot of snow.

    You asked me questions about avoiding injury when I was being bombarded by a lot of negativity. I had no way of knowing if your intent was sincere or not at the time. Honestly my response would not be simple and take a lot of time to write out. Because there is such little research available in this area, my ideas are not supported by a formal study so it can all be argued as anecdotal. I just don't think that insight into certain relationships need a study to validate their existence. The world was round long before it was proven. At some point I will gladly share my ideas with this forum. I'll do that when I feel comfortable that it will not be a waste of my effort.

    I started running in 1972/1973, I ran for 10 yrs before I started keeping a running log in 1982 to document my miles in writing. Since 1982 I have logged over 75,000 documented miles. During the first 10 years of running, I estimate that I covered 15,000 to 20,000 miles for a total of 90,000 to 95,000 estimated lifetime miles. I have no reason to stretch the truth on that. The distance only matters to me. I also have no reason to falsely claim that I have run all that distance without a single injury.

    There was a stretch of 10 yrs where I was training for and competing in 100 mile high altitude trail runs. Some averaged over 11,000 feet above sea level with a high point over 14,000. In order to be able to survive runs like that requires an extraordinary amount of training to prepare. You can not afford to be injured so you learn how to avoid it.

    Currently I'm back to racing in marathons. Since I'm 54, I'm too old to even think about competing in the open class but I'm still competitive in my age group. I'm actually looking forward to turning 55 and moving into the next age class where I can kick everyone's butt.

    As far as the shoe thing goes, I have experience with running shoes that were produced in the early 1970's at the beginning of the modern running shoe era all the way up to the current. The running shoes the companies are producing today are totally amazing. I feel very fortunate to be able to have lasted long enough as a runner to be able to experience what the running shoe industry currently has to offer. As far as I'm concerned, screw the barefoot thing, the running shoes out there today are fantastic, I wouldn't want to miss out on what the shoe industry is producing today and there doesn't seem to be an end in sight.

  20. Dana:

    Now that we are done with all the BS, let's put your knowledge to a useful purpose.

    If I start a thread titled "Dana's Running Shoe Observations", or something of similar meaning, will you try to start contributing a "blog" here on Podiatry Arena? In this thread, you could make statements about your subjective and objective observations and findings about "anything running shoe" that you think would help all us podiatrists here on Podiatry Arena.

    Maybe start on your ideas about the minimalist/Vibram shoe market and how these shoes are different from the older racing flats that previously had been available?? Things like how they fit, how they feel, surfaces they work best in, how heavy they are and how they may accommodate foot orthoses or not, their history and others opinions on the shoes would probably be some of the items you might want to consider discussing. I think this type of blog/discussion could become a very valuable part of Podiatry Arena and would certainly be helpful for many of us.

    Come on, Dana, what do you say??
  21. Dana Roueche

    Dana Roueche Well-Known Member

    Kevin, thanks but I'll think I'll pass on the idea at this point. I'd rather just provide spontaneous input for now. We have agreed to get out of each others face but has that changed what I have to say or the acceptance of that input from others on this forum? Let's start with one step at a time.
    Thank you

  22. Dana:

    That's fine. Just thought this type of idea would allow you to provide a more organized way to contribute your thoughts on these subjects that would, at least in my opinion, be very helpful for many on this forum. I would love to see a short review "article" on many of the "minimalist shoes" and how they compare to the Vibrams.
  23. Perthpod

    Perthpod Active Member

    I think I understand the general/subjective reason for the posting of the ostrich study ;).. but....out of interest.. how did UWA get funding for that one?! correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't ostrich lower limb anatomy completely different to human anatomy? I'm sure we could save a lot of potential energy if we had a massively long tarsometatarsal bone, along with a plantar fascia/ similar structure of that length...Ostriches seem to only look like humans running when they are going backwards..Check out YouTube Ostrich running in reverse and Sorry for not contributing to the 4 spring system/barefoot conversation.
  24. RobinP

    RobinP Well-Known Member


    If you ever felt the desire to do a type of blog, I daresay there would be many a practitioner on here who would find your input valuable. I, for one, am always interested in sport specific shoes. I'm not a runner and am always looking for information to pass on to my patients.


  25. I, for one, have absolutely no interest in Dana's subjective assessment of anything. But each to their own.
  26. HansMassage

    HansMassage Active Member

    Back to the 4 spring system. I fallow Erik Dalton's work closely And found these two articles very confirming of my findings in relation to spinal loss and foot /leg pain. I have commented several times in this forum that the pain in question may be coming from repetitive use injury due to imbalanced upper body motion. To share my observations I have put them on the web as http://reflexposturology.weebly.com/
    Hans Albert Quistorff, LMP
    Antalgic Posture Pain Specialist
  27. Dana Roueche

    Dana Roueche Well-Known Member

    Simon, I have often wondered why you even read what I post here. I wasn't aware of the requirement. As I mentioned earlier, most of what I write is not for your benefit. My advice to you is to simply not read what I write.

    Kevin, my point and concern about investing time with an organized format.

  28. Dana:

    If I had stopped posting here on Podiatry Arena just because someone told me they weren't interested or didn't like what I had to say, I would have stopped contributing here about 4,700 posts ago. You never struck me as being one that was too concerned about what others thought about what you said here on Podiatry Arena.

    If you endeavor to do what I suggested, providing all of us with some objective and subjective information on the newer running shoes here on Podiatry Arena, preferably with photos attached, your "thanks" column would likely be increased ten fold within a few months of doing so.
  29. Dana Roueche

    Dana Roueche Well-Known Member

    Kevin you must have been able to justify your time as not being wasted posting here. I'm not quite there yet. I'm optimistic that time will help. We'll see what the future brings.

  30. efuller

    efuller MVP

    I can see a good concept in core stability. The muscles can act to protect other structures and when they are weak there will be less protection.

    However, the part of the article where he discusses Grecovetsky's work I have some problems with.

    It is pretty amazing that a man with no legs can "walk". However, one should not infer walking with legs has anything to do with walking without legs. There are many redundancies in human walking. There are many ways to make the trailing limb the leading limb. Using the "springs" in the torso is just one of them. It should be possible to walk without the springs of the torso.
    That is an interesting contention. That the gluteals and hamstrings are at maximum stretch at heel strike. They may be at the extreme of motion seen in gait, but they are nowhere near the point where there is passive tension developed in the muscle. If there is tension in the muscle it would be from active contraction of the muscle. This is why I have a problem with the description of this system as a passive "springlike" system. It would be more an active contraction of muscle that powers the system.

  31. efuller

    efuller MVP

    David, posted an article about Grecovetsky's theories

    From the 1st article he posted

    Minimal energy use is important, however too much emphasis is placed on this. Each body part must serve many different tasks efficiently. If you have a machine that defaults to walking it will be less effective at running or dodging a spear or whatever risk might present itself. This is another problem I have with the spinal engine theory.

    Imagine you are hanging from a bar, and just by rotating your back you try and swing your leg forward. This just doesn't work because of Newton's 1st law. If the pelvis swings the leg forward, the leg swings the pelvis backward.

    First off this bad writing because it is often not clear as to what is moving relative to what. Raise the trunk relative to the leg? ground? pelvis?

    How do the fascial connections help raise the trunk. Is it lifting itself up by its own bootstraps? The lack of clarity makes it difficult to accurately criticize the author's thinking.

    Is there anyone out there who thinks they understand Grecovetsky to defend his work? I took a quick look through the other articles posted and did not see much better description of the theory.

  32. The number of "thanks" I receive, plus all the personal e-mail messages I receive from the people who frequent Podiatry Arena, justify my time here to help teach others the intricacies of foot biomechanics, foot orthoses and shoe biomechanics. It definitely wouldn't be worth it if I felt as if others weren't gaining valuable knowledge from my postings here on Podiatry Arena. I have much better things to do otherwise.
  33. Dana Roueche

    Dana Roueche Well-Known Member

    Kevin, what you are asking has already been done by others on the web. I would start here:


    The main site has a lot of great, informative discussion and on the right of the home page includes a list of reviews of many current minimalist shoes.


    The following site is Vibram centric but has a lot of discussion about minimalist shoes in in general. This first link attempts to categorize minimal shoes which I found interesting.


    This next link talks about what distinguishes Vibrams from other minimal shoes.


    While the site in general is geared towards Vibrams, they have many shoe reviews of minimal shoes that can be very helpful. When you come to the main page, look at the top right corner, there is a section labeled "Recent Reviews".


    Happy reading.


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