Forefoot Running May Prevent Impact-Related Injury as Compared with Heel Strike Running

Forefoot Running May Prevent Impact-Related Injury as Compared with Heel Strike Running

How does forefoot running reduce impact loading on the body? This graph shows the classic vertical ground reaction force that’s always generated in both forefoot and heel strike running. The major difference between the two is: (A) shows a sample curve with a distinct impact peak spike, typical of a heel strike landing pattern in running. This impact peak spike means that the collision force at heel strike is more enormous and immediate as compared with (B) which shows a sample curve with no impact peak spike, typical of a forefoot strike landing pattern. The smoothing of the curve indicates little to no intensive collision force at touchdown in forefoot running and may actually be a safer haven for the body to safely tolerate faster running speeds and longer running distances while using a forefoot strike landing. Read more here about why forefoot running may be more effective than heel strike running at reducing the risk of impact-related injuries.

Bretta Riches

"I believe the forefoot strike is the engine of endurance running..."

BSc Neurobiology; MSc Biomechanics candidate, ultra minimalist runner & founder of RunForefoot. I was a heel striker, always injured. I was inspired by the great Tirunesh Dibaba to try forefoot running. Now, I'm injury free. This is why I launched Run Forefoot, to advocate the health & performance benefits of forefoot running and to raise awareness on the dangers of heel striking, because the world needs to know.
Bretta Riches