December 23

Springy Shoes Soles Won’t Make You Run Much Faster

Springy Shoes Soles Won’t Make You Run Much Faster

Running shoes are a worthwhile investment, according to most runners. However, there has been some debate over whether running shoes can help you run faster. They could allow marathon runners to break that two-hour barrier. This challenge will held in Italy this weekend. Are you able to improve your personal record with newer shoes? If so, could these shoes consider performance enhancing technologies giving runners an unfair advantage?

Shoes With Lighter Soles Are More Comfortable

Running performance can be affect by the weight of your shoes. Running performance is affect by the weight of your shoes. Shoes that are heavier can cause your muscles to use more energy to move your feet. Running shoes have become lighter thanks to advances in materials technology. The average premium running shoe weighs between 250 and 340 grams, while the Nike Zoom Vaporfly Elite is just 184g.

Why not go barefoot if you don’t care about the shoe weight? Running barefoot takes energy that must be absorb by the feet and legs when the foot touches the ground. Some of this can be alleviate by shoe cushioning. But, cushioning can also increase shoe weight. There is a compromise between cushioning’s benefits and the negative effects of extra weight.

Recent research found that running in shoes weighing 211g each resulted in the same amount of energy called running economy, as running barefoot. Running barefoot on the treadmill that provides the same cushioning and support as shoes, without adding weight, produced a slight (1.6%) increase in running economy. For the best running performance, it is important to have enough cushioning and as little weight as possible.

The Jury Is Out On Springy

Shoe cushioning can help reduce muscular effort at impact. Traditional running shoes are known to lose energy with each step, mainly due to heat. This energy must be replenish through muscular contraction to propel runners into the next step. Cushioned shoes actually increase foot and leg muscle activation during push-off compared to running barefoot. The disadvantage of cushioning at impact could offset by the increase effort require to push off.

Imagine if we could harness the energy from impact to get it back. The latest developments in running shoe design focus on lightweight cushioning materials that act as springs and store energy from foot impacts to aid power pushoff. This could potentially reduce the effort required to absorb impact and push off power, and possibly improve running economy. There are many factors to consider before we can come to a decision.

Only springs can return the energy they absorb when their shoes touch the ground. Springs can’t generate the additional energy required to accelerate or run uphill. This means that muscles still have to work extra hard and we don’t know how springs affect their ability. This could affect your ability to run uphill or downhill, accelerate, slow down, or speed up.

Shoes That Are Stiff But Not Too Stiff Can Help

It is important to consider how your foot moves. When we push off, our toe joints naturally bend. This dissipates some energy from calf muscle contraction. Reduce the amount your toes bend by making your shoes stiffer will help you lose less energy. Running economy can be improve by stiffer soled shoes, but only if it is optimize for each athlete.

Too stiff means that the calf muscles must work too hard in order to generate the forces necessary to rotate the ankle. Too soft, and the benefit is negligible. It is no surprise that Nike shoes are design to allow runners to run marathons in less than two hours. They use carbon fiber insoles which adjust the stiffness for each runner.

The ideal stiffness of a shoe sole depends on many factors, including the runners weight, leg length, and strength. The problem with this design is that the optimal bending stiffness can change with changing factors.

Running at different speeds requires us to change the way we activate our muscles. A simple spring like the carbon fiber blade cannot be change in stiffness to allow for different speeds. Even if we could adjust the stiffness of our shoes as we run, it wouldn’t be enough to reduce the effort required to go uphill or accelerate.


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Posted December 23, 2021 by toad in category "Uncategorized