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The Ins and Outs of Heel and Midfoot Strike Running

The Ins and Outs of Heel and Midfoot Strike Running

Heel and Midfoot Strike Running

Running is one of the most beneficial exercises to do in the morning. It is a great way to improve your body and strengthen your health because it pushes the capabilities of your cardiorespiratory system and limbs. Proper breathing, foot placement, and posture are needed to maximize the effects of running on your body. There are different techniques in the running, and it can be pretty confusing to someone unfamiliar with these methods. Some examples of these running patterns are heel strike and mid-foot strike. This article will be informative to of all the necessary things to know about heel strike and midfoot strike running.


What is Heel Strike?

Heel strike is a running pattern where your heel strikes the ground first. It's one of the most known running techniques among runners and people who like to exercise. Additionally, this running technique is also found within common folk. Heel strike running is usually done by extending your knee and placing your foot in a way that your heel lands first. Given this form, many people are concerned that this form may cause issues and injuries to the body. It is said that the force your leg receives from the repetitive heel striking can gradually damage your knees and pelvis. Aside from health concerns, professionals think that heel striking is less effective than other forms of running because the motion of heel striking forces weight towards the heel and creates a braking effect within each of the runner's strides. However, according to physical therapists, there are higher risks to injury in heel striking only if the legs are extended away from their body. If a runner heel strikes with their foot aligned to their body, then the effects and risks of heel striking are lessened. Additionally, they also mentioned that the best way to avoid the negative impact of heel striking is to increase one's running cadence. If they do this, the impact and shock the runner's leg will receive from heel striking are significantly decreased.

What is Mid Foot Strike?

The mid-foot strike is a running pattern where the heel and ball of your foot strike the ground with each stride. For the untrained eye, mid-foot strike running can appear as landing your whole foot on the ground in each stride, while runners and professionals easily recognize it due to its beautiful form. Most runners and professionals think that midfoot strike is the safest out of other running patterns. In the midfoot strike, the runner's body weight is equally allocated to various parts of their lower extremity. Compared to heel strike, whose force is distributed to their knee and pelvis, midfoot strike evenly distributes the pressure of striking the ground all over the hips and legs. Furthermore, tension and stress in the ankles and calves become reduced in the midfoot strike. That means that most runners doing midfoot strikes are less susceptible to standard foot and leg injuries such as sprained ankles and calves.


Performance-wise, the midfoot strike makes use of your body's gravity to help you move forward. This way, your body will require less energy to propel itself forward since gravity aids it naturally. As it appears, the mid-foot strike is an efficient and safe way of running.


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