Running is an efficient and effective mode of locomotion allowing most animals and humans to travel quickly on foot. Running is often described as a step pyramid type movement in which all four feet are over the flat ground. Because the body of the runner steps onto the starting line in front of the curve in the track, there is only one point where the feet should touch the ground, called the heel. The distance from this starting point to the end of the track is called the stride length. Running makes use of many muscles and joints to facilitate the operation of the skeletal and muscular systems. Several systems are involved in running:
The major functions that are exercised while running are the transfer of energy and motion from the lower leg to the upper body and the movement of the upper limbs. This operation is called the forward bend. It is possible to determine the number of strides while running by figuring out the time it takes to go from the halfway point to the finish line. Other functions that are also important while running are the absorption of shock and impact and the production of heat. All these systems contribute to the efficiency of the runner. A successful runner can be said to have good muscle power, good cardiovascular efficiency and good coordination, just to mention some of the most important running-related systems.
As has already been mentioned, running is the most natural motion people can do. Most people can run or walk a few miles without any serious difficulty. This makes running the most popular form of exercise in the world. Runners do not need to start with a long distance plan since the distances can be kept short by changing the pace and / or using different techniques. If you are a beginner, you will have to start with a short distance plan that will help you become fit and healthy. The recommended duration of a 30 minutes run is approximately four to five miles for men and three to four miles for women.
One aspect that all runners should consider is the running motion. The running motion consists of three main aspects: forward motion (going forward), backward motion (backward) and a combination of both motions. These three motions while running should be done in an efficient manner so as to provide the runner with the best chances at gaining speed and distance. As a matter of fact, good running form is one of the keys to achieving a good performance.
One of the most important aspects of running is the motion of the feet while going forward. A good runner always puts his heel outwards while going forward. In fact, if a runner does not put his heel out, he will lose the advantage of a strong foot strike and suffer an injury. This is because the entire body of the runner is carried forward while keeping the feet on the ground and this is called the ‘hinge’.
There are two types of running gait. The first type is the dynamic gait where the runner keeps moving all along the length of the gait, while the other gait is the gliding gait where the movement is less. This article deals only with the dynamic gait. The purpose of this article is to provide information about the ideal running style that every runner should adopt for a healthy and effective running. It should not be considered as medical advice.
Long distance running refers to any distance over a distance of more than a thousand meters. Competitive running is the only sport in which a competitor runs against someone else and the objective is to complete the distance the fastest. As far as competitive running is concerned, one may choose between high-intensity running (I wattage) and low-intensity running (I min). Based on your overall fitness, you can increase or decrease the amount of miles you plan to run based on your fitness level.
One of the factors that affect your footstrike is your propulsion. The force with which you propel your foot against the ground depends upon how fast you are running and how strong your leg muscles are. In order to enhance your propulsion, it is recommended that you perform plyometrics. A plyometrically-developed leg muscle will allow you to generate higher forces as you run and reduce the impact of gravity upon your body. For example, if you take a jump rope and jump in both your feet simultaneously, you will transfer most of the energy from jumping onto your forefeet and into your forearms, which will minimize your drag.