The Benefits and Risks of Changing
The Science Suggests
Injury Prevention: By changing technique we can change joint torques and loading rates which are the two biggest risk factors for injury.
Increased Efficiency: By changing technique we can change the ratio of muscle action to elasticity which influences efficiency.
Increased Speed: By changing joint torques, loading rates and the ratio of muscle action to elasticity we can improve how we control and direct the Ground Reaction Force experienced by the body which is the ultimate determinant of speed.
The Observations and Anecdotes
Elite Runners, habitually-barefoot populations, and uninjured- shod runners – display similar spinal alignment, foot contact times, cadence and hip mechanics when running.
The individual: The postural and structural stability of the individual and their physiological health will determine the benefit/risk ratio of changing running technique. This is where a running specific screening process involving video analysis, movement skill milestones and educated coaching comes into the equation and is the reason Lee Saxby’s BTR Coaching Methodology exists.