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Title: Running technique is an important component of running economy and performance
Authors: Folland, Jonathan P.
Allen, Samuel J.
Black, Matt I.
Handsaker, Joe C.
Forrester, Stephanie E.
Keywords: Distance running
Running kinematics
Energy cost
Season‟s best time
Vertical oscillation
Horizontal velocity
Issue Date: 2017
Publisher: © The Authors. Published by Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins
Citation: FOLLAND, J.P. ...et al., 2017. Running technique is an important component of running economy and performance. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 49(7), pp.1412-1423.
Abstract: © 2017 American College of Sports MedicineDespite an intuitive relationship between technique and both running economy (RE) and performance, and the diverse techniques employed by runners to achieve forward locomotion, the objective importance of overall technique and the key components therein remain to be elucidated. PURPOSE: To determine the relationship between individual and combined kinematic measures of technique with both RE and performance. METHODS: Ninety-seven endurance runners (47 female) of diverse competitive standards performed a discontinuous protocol of incremental treadmill running (4 min stages, 1 km.h increments). Measurements included three-dimensional full body kinematics, respiratory gases to determine energy cost, and velocity of lactate turnpoint (vLTP). Five categories of kinematic measures (vertical oscillation, braking, posture, stride parameters and lower limb angles) and locomotory energy cost (LEc) were averaged across 10-12 km.h (the highest common velocity <vLTP). Performance was measured as Season’s Best Time (SB Time) converted to a sex-specific z-score. RESULTS: Numerous kinematic variables were correlated with running economy and performance (LEc 19 variables; SB Time 11 variables). Regression analysis found three variables (pelvis vertical oscillation during ground contact normalised to height, minimum knee joint angle during ground contact, minimum horizontal pelvis velocity) explained 39% of LEc variability. In addition, four variables (minimum horizontal pelvis velocity, shank touchdown angle, duty factor, trunk forward lean) combined to explain 31% of the variability in performance (SB Time). CONCLUSIONS: This study provides novel and robust evidence that technique explains a substantial proportion of the variance in RE and performance. We recommend that runners and coaches are attentive to specific aspects of stride parameters and lower limb angles in part to optimise pelvis movement, and ultimately enhance performance.This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives License 4.0 (CCBY-NC-ND), where it is permissible to download and share the work provided it is properly cited. The work cannot be changed in any way or used commercially without permission from the journal.
Description: This is an Open Access Article. It is published by Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International Licence (CC BY-NC-ND). Full details of this licence are available at: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/
Sponsor: This work was financially supported by MAS Holdings, Sri Lanka.
Version: Published version
DOI: 10.1249/MSS.0000000000001245
URI: https://dspace.lboro.ac.uk/2134/24646
Publisher Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1249/MSS.0000000000001245
ISSN: 0195-9131
Appears in Collections:Published Articles (Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering)
Published Articles (Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences)

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