The effect of shoe type and fatigue on strike index and spatiotemporal parameters of running

Robert Mann, Laurent Malisoux, Axel Urhausen, Andrew Statham, Kenneth Meijer, Daniel Theisen
Gait & Posture 2015, 42 (1): 91-5
We aimed to observe differences in running style parameters and the stride-to-stride coefficient of variation and correlative patterns using detrended fluctuation analysis (DFA) between conventional and first-time minimalistic shoe use. We also aimed to study the effect of fatigue on these parameters. 26 recreational runners were tested using a pressure insole device on a treadmill whilst wearing conventional (CONV) and minimalistic (MIN) shoes. They then performed a prolonged running bout simulating a fatiguing training session, before being tested a second time in both shoe types. Average values of strike index (initial ground contact point on the footsole expressed as a percentage of total sole length) were not significantly different between CONV [25.7±14.6% (unfatigued), 23.1±11.1% (fatigued)] and MIN [28.9±19.1% (unfatigued), 26.7±17.6% (fatigued)] (p=0.501). The fatigued state also yielded a similar strike index compared to the unfatigued state (p=0.661). An overall trend in decreased inter-stride correlative patterns of strike index was observed in MIN compared to CONV (p=0.075). No differences in contact time, flight time, stride time, duty factor, stride length and stride frequency were found between shoe types. A trend in reduced flight time (p=0.078) and therefore increased duty factor (p=0.053) was observed due to fatigue. We conclude that in recreational runners, no meaningful, acute adaptation in running style occurs as a result of first-time MIN use. Similarly, runners were able to maintain their running style after a prolonged running bout.

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