Choosing Running Shoes

Picking out the best suited running shoe is a vital choice that the runner needs to make. As there are a couple of hundred distinct brands and models of athletic shoes out there, this is simply not exactly an uncomplicated selection to make. Each of those models of athletic shoes include different design properties which need to be matched up to the foot shape, running form as well as experiences of the runner. It is broadly thought to be an essential decision which needs to be made and was previously one of the most expensive choices that a runner will have to make (now the wearable technology to track runners’ costs more than athletic shoes). It is considered that from the improper choice of running footwear is made that this will predispose the runner for an greater risk for a running overuse injury.

The first bit of advice for any athlete is to stay with what they are acquainted with. If the running footwear that they’re currently making use of is doing the job, then there is no reason in switching these. Unfortunately, the running footwear brands do usually tend to modify or improve their athletic shoes designs from year upon year, making this not always possible. If a particular running shoe model will modify a lot from what a runner is used to, you can find usually quite a few other running shoes that might be comparable to which can be selected from. The important thing should be to persist with what you’re familiar with and used to running in. That will not be feasible for those that are a newcomer to running. These new runners really should go to a speciality running shoe retailer and get good quality guidance as to what is a great entry level running shoe for first time runners.

The second piece of advice is to get the fit appropriate. Various running footwear versions can be found in different widths, so finding a running shoe that is the appropriate width for the feet are essential for comfort reasons and to steer clear of such things as blisters. The length is required to be correct to steer clear of issues such as injury to the toe nails. The footwear should really be longer than the foot by approximately a thumbs width. Various running footwear brands make use of various lasts that the footwear is made on. This affects the design of the upper of the shoe and it will take a bit of experimentation to discover a running shoe type that the upper which accurately matches the shape of the foot.

The third bit of advice is usually that the running footwear have to be comfortable. This tends to have a sizeable effect and how you are feeling on runs, especially the longer runs. A less than comfortable running shoe is going to make the run to some degree unpleasant. This is where running shoe stores which have a treadmill can be worth their weight in gold. This lets you have a brief jog or run to see how the shoes feel. It is advisable to note not just how the footwear feels but additionally the way you react to the running shoe when you contact the ground and when you press forward on the running shoe.

RunEASI wearable enables runners to train and rehabilitate more efficiently

The wearable is worn around the waist.

Being able to exercise without pain or injury: it’s every athlete’s dream as well as the goal of RunEASI, a new spin-off of KU Leuven. RunEASI’s wearable measures the impact experienced by runners and provides scientific feedback that can help them avoid and recover from injuries. The spin-off is supported by the Gemma Frisius Fund and the Freshmen investment fund.

Runners typically use a heart rate monitor, but this device does not offer insight into how the body responds to the impact caused by the feet landing on the ground. And yet, this impact is precisely what determines the risk of injuries. RunEASI – which originated from a collaboration between movement and computer scientists at KU Leuven – has therefore developed a wearable application that does assess these important parameters.

This is achieved using a sensor that is attached to the lower back with a belt and is connected to an app. The sensors measures the impact on the body while running and detects any movement compensations that may occur. The app provides feedback to improve the running pattern. RunEASI is the first application that can perform such an analysis and intervention in a scientifically validated and efficient way. The application will be available on the market as of mid-February 2021.

Stability, symmetry, impact

“We are trying to establish the link between the way in which someone runs, the associated impact loads, and the risk of injuries,” says Professor Benedicte Vanwanseele from the Human Movement Biomechanics unit at KU Leuven. “Three parameters are key to this: stability, symmetry, and impact.”

“Research has shown that trunk instability increases with a runner’s fatigue level. When this is combined with high impact loads, this creates a compensatory pattern that increases the risk of overuse injuries. Symmetry shows whether the impact is equally divided between left and right: after an injury, for instance, a runner may favour one leg without realising it. Last, but not least, the impact parameter shows how the body responds to the shocks that occur when the foot strikes the ground.”

“Our tool intervenes when the data show that the runner has a harmful running pattern,” says computer science professor Jesse Davis. “AI allows us to analyse when the body is exposed to the most severe impacts. This can depend on the surface, the pace, the duration of the training, the runner’s fatigue, and other factors. On the basis of this analysis, coaches and physiotherapists can proactively adjust the runners’ training.”

More insight and better support

“With RunEASI we want to help runners, whether it be professional or recreational ones, to achieve their goals with less risk of injury,” explain co-founders Kurt Schütte (CEO) and Tim Op De Beéck (CTO). “The way our sensor is attached is unique and was developed in cooperation with the orthopaedic experts at Steunzoolpunt. It enables us to measure our new movement metrics very efficiently and accurately. Physiotherapists can use this scientific analysis to better assess when someone is ready to resume training after an injury.”

“We strongly believe in digital tools that improve a person’s quality of life, and this ambition is also reflected in RunEASI,” says Steven Spittaels of the Freshmen investment fund. “It’s an application that, thanks to its scientific feedback, can be of great added value to runners and professional healthcare providers. Athletes obviously want to know how to stay injury free and we want to support RunEASI to help them achieve this.”

“We are extremely grateful for the belief and financial support of the Gemma Frisius Fund and Freshmen Fund,” responds CEO Kurt Schütte. “With their support, we can fulfil our mission and ambition to make the world run better.”

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More information

The RunEASI wearable can be pre-ordered and will be available as of mid-February 2021. Check the website for further information: runeasi.ai

Study reveals physical demands of two-hour marathon

Some of the elites runners were tested at Exeter Arena

Press Release:

Elite runners need a specific combination of physiological abilities to have any chance of running a sub-two-hour marathon, new research shows.

The study is based on detailed testing of athletes who took part in Nike’s Breaking2 project – an ambitious bid to break the two-hour barrier.

Professor Andrew Jones, of the University of Exeter, said the findings reveal that elite marathon runners must have a “perfect balance” of VO2 max (rate of oxygen uptake), efficiency of movement and a high “lactate turn point” (above which the body experiences more fatigue).

The VO2 measured among elite runners shows they can take in oxygen twice as fast at marathon pace as a “normal” person of the same age could while sprinting flat-out.

“Some of the results – particularly the VO2 max – were not actually as high as we expected,” Professor Jones said.

“Instead, what we see in the physiology of these runners is a perfect balance of characteristics for marathon performance.

“The requirements of a two-hour marathon have been extensively debated, but the actual physiological demands have never been reported before.”

The runners in the study included Eliud Kipchoge, who took part in Breaking2 – falling just short of the two-hour target – but later achieving the goal in 1:59:40.2 in the Ineos 1:59 challenge.

Based on outdoor running tests on 16 athletes in the selection stage of Breaking2, the study found that a 59kg runner would need to take in about four litres of oxygen per minute (or 67ml per kg of weight per minute) to maintain two-hour marathon pace (21.1 km/h).

“To run for two hours at this speed, athletes must maintain what we call ‘steady-state’ VO2,” Professor Jones said.

“This means they meet their entire energy needs aerobically (from oxygen) – rather than relying on anaerobic respiration, which depletes carbohydrate stores in the muscles and leads to more rapid fatigue.”

In addition to VO2 max, the second key characteristic is running “economy”, meaning the body must use oxygen efficiently – both internally and through an effective running action.

The third trait, lactate turn point, is the percentage of VO2 max a runner can sustain before anaerobic respiration begins.

“If and when this happens, carbohydrates in the muscles are used at a high rate, depleting glycogen stores,” Professor Jones explained.

“At this point – which many marathon runners may know as ‘the wall’ – the body has to switch to burning fat, which is less efficient and ultimately means the runner slows down.

“The runners we studied – 15 of the 16 from East Africa – seem to know intuitively how to run just below their ‘critical speed’, close to the ‘lactate turn point’ but never exceeding it.

“This is especially challenging because – even for elite runners – the turn point drops slightly over the course of a marathon.

“Having said that, we suspect that the very best runners in this group, especially Eliud Kipchoge, show remarkable fatigue resistance.”

The testing, conducted in Exeter and at Nike’s performance centre in Oregon, USA, provided a surprising experience for a group of amateur runners in the UK.

“We tested 11 of the 16 runners at Exeter Arena a few years ago,” Professor Jones said.

“Some local runners were there at the time, and it was a real eye-opener for them when a group of the world’s best athletes turned up.

“The elite runners were great – they even joined in with the local runners and helped to pace their training.”

Is the Running Cadence Important?

Inside running community there is often a massive amount of discussion as well as obsession for the running form or method with no shortage of viewpoints, a lot of comments from guru’s with lots of dogma rather than much research to back up nearly all of it. The perspectives from the so-called gurus and how an athlete should actually run can be quite varied and quite often contrary, which can often leave the typical runner rather baffled. There are several factors with the various running methods for instance how and where the foot contacts the ground along with the placement from the leg and pelvis. One that lately got a great deal of focus was the cadence. The cadence is related to how quick the legs turn over, generally calculated as the quantity of steps taken each minute.

There are a number of methods to ascertain the cadence and you will find apps you can use to ascertain the cadence. It’s just a matter of keeping track of the number of steps the athlete normally takes in a time period and after that standardizing that to 1 minute. There was clearly just lately an increasing movement touting for athletes to cut short their step length while increasing the rate that the legs turn over ie raise the cadence. The dogma was that if you can get the cadence close to 180 steps/minute then that is by some means a significant way to decrease the risk for exercise related injury while increasing performance. This 180 steps/minute was popularized by the well-known running coach Jack Daniels. He based this on his studies of athletes and their step cadences at the 1984 Olympics. Daniels broadly pushed the 180 as an well suited for all runners to shoot for.

Since that time, the research has demonstrated that this cadence in athletes is normally fairly varied with a few as little as 150-160 while others are around 200 steps a minute. It can seem like it is a pretty individual thing with no one best cadence. It can appear that every runner will probably have their very own perfect cadence and will also differ between runners. Shortening the stride length to raise the cadence does appear to have some positive aspects and that’s based on a number of studies, however what is not supported is raising it to that particular mythical 180 that has been widely suggested. It can help with runners that are overstriding and help them learn never to stride so far forward when running. It does seem to assist athletes who have complications with their knees as it can lessen the strains there, but it will however raise the stresses in other places, therefore any alterations needs to be carried out little by little , cautiously and step by step.

What exactly is most significant with regard to runners to know is that this is very individual and it is a matter of working out all on your own or with the assistance of an experienced running technique mentor precisely what is right for you as the individual. One point that has come out around most of the buzz close to cadence would be to not be enticed by the latest trend or expert and try to look for the a lot more reasonable and regarded opinions.

What impact did Arthur Lydiard have on running?

Arthur Lydiard had been a very significant distance running coach coming from New Zealand and his legacy has had substantial influence over the training of runners today. Arthur Lydiard has been recognized for making running or jogging popular in the late 60’s and early 1970’s. Many have even proposed that Arthur Lydiard possibly even created jogging. He coached many Olympic winners from NZ in the 1960s (Peter Snell, Barry Magee and Murray Halberg) together a tremendous impact via some other mentors on various other prominent NZ runners for example John Walker who was the first person to run greater than 100 sub-4 minute miles and also run a mile faster than 3 minutes and 50 second. He was born 6 July 1917 and passed on on 11 December 2004 at the age of 87. He has had been given a number of accolades in his own NZ and in Finland where his guidance became accountable for an increase of Finnish distance running during the early 70’s. The publication, Runners World named Lydiard as the coach of the century as part of their millennium issue. As an athlete himself, Lydiard took part in the marathon at the 1950 British Empire Games, finishing thirteenth having a time of 2hr 54m. Lydiard’s influence on running continues to be enormous and way over and above his personal achievements as a runner himself.

As for Lydiard’s running approach, he believed in separating the season into unique training periods or stages. The base or background time period was the endurance phase which was comprised of at least ten weeks of highest miles that the runner is capable of doing in order to improve their aerobic foundation or background. That’s where his common 100 miles each week originated from as he deemed this to be the optimum. He strongly suggested for the lengthier runs would be about 20 miles. These kinds of distances are run at a pace that was slightly below the anaerobic threshold and is maintained as a stable aerobic speed. The aim should be to build the largest endurance foundation possible for the subsequent phases. The subsequent period had been the uphill training phase which usually chiefly consist of uphill bounding or springing exercises to build power in the legs which was commonly carried out three times a week. Some middle and long distance aerobic work is still done throughout this period which may go on for approximately four or so weeks. The subsequent 4 or so week period was called the sharpening or speed period in which some anaerobic interval and speed work training is completed so the athlete may improve your speed. After that 4 week phase, the difficult running is backed off and the concentration will then be on remaining sharp and fresh for racing.

Many think about it unlikely that any coach are ever going to have more impact on the coaching methods of middle and long distance runners than him. The plan which he created transformed middle and long distance training with regard to the level of work he believed a runner must be undertaking. The running plans was comprised of lots of working hard. The majority of coaching programs made use of by runners nowadays can track their origins back to what was recommended by Arthur Lydiard.