Title

Effectiveness of A Gait Intervention on Top Speed Running

Presentation Type

Poster

Abstract

Fastest running speeds are achieved by applying greater ground reaction forces (GRF) in shorter periods of foot-ground contact. Recently, the dynamics of the foot-ground collision have been recognized as the primary gait difference between elite and recreational sprinters. We attempted to train subjects to hit the ground more like elites by developing an intervention to alter their gait. Five collegiate sprinters and one recreational runner (male= 2; female= 4) completed the study. The intervention involved a pre-test where subjects were taken to top speed on a high-speed, instrumented treadmill. From this, we measured the GRFs and obtained simultaneous high-speed 3D joint kinematics. Subjects reached their top speed when they achieved a minimum of eight footfalls without backward drift on the treadmill. Then subjects completed a 3-day intervention consisting of running-form drills and treadmill sprint trials at 90% of their top speed. Between the treadmill sprints, feedback was given on whether subjects practiced front side or backside kinematics, which refers to the portion of the step wherein the stance leg is in front or behind the body’s center of mass. We emphasized the front side-kinematics to enhance the collision. Following the intervention, subjects completed a top speed post-test to determine whether the intervention was a success. The average increase in top speed was 6.7 ± 1.3%. These results indicated that the gait intervention was successful and suggests that sprinting speed can be enhanced by mechanisms other than muscular training. Since the time course of this study was too brief, it can be concluded that adaptations were not due to physiological mechanisms.

Category

Physical Sciences

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Apr 17th, 3:00 PM Apr 17th, 4:00 PM

Effectiveness of A Gait Intervention on Top Speed Running

South UC Ballroom

Fastest running speeds are achieved by applying greater ground reaction forces (GRF) in shorter periods of foot-ground contact. Recently, the dynamics of the foot-ground collision have been recognized as the primary gait difference between elite and recreational sprinters. We attempted to train subjects to hit the ground more like elites by developing an intervention to alter their gait. Five collegiate sprinters and one recreational runner (male= 2; female= 4) completed the study. The intervention involved a pre-test where subjects were taken to top speed on a high-speed, instrumented treadmill. From this, we measured the GRFs and obtained simultaneous high-speed 3D joint kinematics. Subjects reached their top speed when they achieved a minimum of eight footfalls without backward drift on the treadmill. Then subjects completed a 3-day intervention consisting of running-form drills and treadmill sprint trials at 90% of their top speed. Between the treadmill sprints, feedback was given on whether subjects practiced front side or backside kinematics, which refers to the portion of the step wherein the stance leg is in front or behind the body’s center of mass. We emphasized the front side-kinematics to enhance the collision. Following the intervention, subjects completed a top speed post-test to determine whether the intervention was a success. The average increase in top speed was 6.7 ± 1.3%. These results indicated that the gait intervention was successful and suggests that sprinting speed can be enhanced by mechanisms other than muscular training. Since the time course of this study was too brief, it can be concluded that adaptations were not due to physiological mechanisms.