Are You Overstriding?

Check out one of my latest Gait Analysis studies. Here we have a high mileage runner (60-80 miles per week) who has struggled with overuse injuries primarily on his RIGHT side. When evaluating him initially, we noticed that the musculature on his right side was much more pronounced than his left. After ruling out neurological involvement that might cause atrophy (decreased muscle mass), we decided to go to some video evidence. The culprit of this issue immediately jumped out at us. Look at how far out in front of his body his right foot initially touches the ground compared to his left. There is some major asymmetry going on here. Ideally, a runner’s feet should be striking the ground directly under or slightly in front of his/her body and center of gravity. When this does not occur, too much negative force is absorbed into our legs and injuries occur. While this rule can vary somewhat due to the speed and distance of the runner, this much of an asymmetrical stride is an issue and the cause of  his overuse injuries. Some ways to correct this include being evaluated for joint or soft tissue dysfunction which would be affecting range of motion, and practicing the “Pawback” drill which retrains your feet to land at an optimal location.

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