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Foot Strike Unlimited Guide

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Types of foot strike, if you can change it and how it relates to injuries, running work and running shoes – we have included it all in this guide. The 31-hour survey is a comprehensive guide to finding the answers you are looking for.

The best foot strike is not. Even for pro athletes, footwork varies across the board. A foot strike that is right for you is definitely there. Generally, it is the one you have chosen by nature, without thinking about it.

It is the injured athletes and elite athletes who often show interest in changing foot strikes.

Foot Strike Unlimited Guide

Hitting the foot tells you how your foot sits while running. There are 3 types of foot strike:

Forefoot strike (FFS): front end first. The heel can sit on the back or not at all.

Midfoot strike (MFS): the outer edge of the middle and footfalls first. Then the foot goes down and both the front and heel are down.

Rearfoot strike (RFS) or heel: heel stays first, followed by the front. 94% of runners are heel runners (based on a survey of 1,991 runners).

Digging deeper, we summarize what the world of science has said so far about the foot strike and its relation to injury, the active economy, speed, changes:

A holistic view of science: changing foot strike and its relation to injury and an active economy

What if you change your foot strike?

The study concluded that switching to a moderate or previous strike:

  • It does not promote a viable economy
  • It does not remove the impact on the foot contact
  • And It does not reduce the risk of injury-related to running.

Should you change your foot strike?

  • This meta-analysis looked at 53 studies and concluded:
  • Changing the foot strike pattern is not recommended for an uninjured runner who is a back foot striker.
  • The relationship between the strike pattern and the risk of injury could not be determined.
  • How does a functioning economy change with a foot strike?

This study showed

  • RFS runners may not work well once they start using FFS. Once fixed to it, the efficiency will be the same as RFS.
  • At faster speeds, both RFS and FFS messages work slower when the forefoot hits.
  • How does speed affect a foot strike (for top athletes)?

% Of the back strike increases with the speed of the running and, conversely, the% of the middle strike increases as the speed of the run [source] increases.

Is a previous strike a necessity for a barefoot run?

The metareview looked at 30 years of research articles and concluded that runners should use a pre-strike pattern rather than a heel strike to reduce ground reaction force, ground contact time and step length.

How can you change your foot strike?

This study has shown that the shape of the foot (not including shoes or boots) is more important than the speed of running. It is recommended that runners change their shoes when considering foot strike adjustments.

NIKE Running Shoes


In addition, it has been shown that runners prefer to hit the heel no matter how they run (if they run in shoes). If you are barefoot, only 24% of strikes had their hind legs and no significant change in the distribution pattern of the strike and running speed.

What strike is leading to fewer injuries?

Minor Injuries: Runners who hit the back legs had a 2.6x more chance of having them.

Moderate injuries: Back foot strikers were 2.4 times more likely to have them.

Traumatic injury: no significant difference in hitting the hind legs and runners hitting the hind legs (source).

What are the injuries associated with a heel strike?

Hip pain, knee pain, lower back, tibial stress, plantar fasciitis, and fractures of the lower extremity (excluding metatarsals) were 2–4 times more common in the hind limbs than in the hind limbs.

Injuries predicted to be high in athletes hitting the forefoot (Achilles tendinopathies, foot pain, fractures of metatarsal stress fractures) were not significantly different between them and athletes hitting the hind legs.

Why does a heel strike have such a bad reputation?

Because of the power of reaction on the ground.

Lower reaction capacity is one of the ways to analyze running and what impact it has on the body. They describe how the foot (in the shoe) pushes down. These tests are usually done in a lab.

Here, we have to split 3 metrics:

  • The main effect: the greater the force of occurrence during the first arrival.
  • Active peak: the maximum force that occurs during a foot strike.
  • Load rate: how the force is formed, how big the curve is at the time of first arrival.

The graph below shows why the heel strike is so special: it is the only foot strike with such great power. It happens when the heel hits the ground, and something happens later (full contact on the floor and closure of the toe).

Why is a foot strike so important?

There are many reasons why a foot strike is such a noise and there are runners who pay attention to it. The top 3 are:

  • It can affect your speed,
  • It can affect your use of energy,
  • And It may also contribute to the risk of injury.

That’s why runners want to use the full version of the impact (foot strike).

Additionally, footwork is just a piece of the puzzle. It is usually closely related to heel drop (type of running shoes), running cadence and overstriding.

How to determine your foot strike

The best way to determine a foot strike is to locate the centre of pressure on the first contact. The strike indicator is a condition that is expressed as a percentage of the foot length.

Seals on removable insoles

Highly recommended:

  • Remove the removable insole from your shoe
  • Be careful when the imprint is too tight or when the insole degrades too much
  • The strongest stamp (downgrade) indicates the area with the largest loading (where you are hitting)

Important to know

If it is not easy to see by looking at the insole, touch it. He feels when he presses too hard.

Check both insoles (left and right), especially if you have a foot injury or surgery. You may have a different footing.

Intuitively. Although this method is very simple and time-consuming, it does not work.

Runners are good at identifying their foot strike pattern. Here is the proof:


Foreign athletes have correctly identified their foot strike pattern in 56.5% of cases, while recreational athletes have done 43.5% of the time, as shown in this study.

In this study, only 68.3% of runners reported a related claim determined by video analysis.

Wear the pattern on the shoes

The same process as when we decide to pronounce what we have described in detail in our pronunciation guide. You look at the outsoles of your shoes and notice which part of the shoe is most damaged.

This method is not recommended in the event of a foot strike because outsoles experience ageing and tearing in different areas depending on the type of site (inclination, granulation, etc.).

Foot strike angle (high-speed video analysis)

It is very difficult to pinpoint the point of a foot strike because of the need for sophisticated equipment and expensive equipment. Fortunately, there is a significant correlation between claim point and foot strike angle This angle is measured using high-speed video analysis.

This method is accurate and you may be able to use your phone’s camera (at least 240 frames per second).

The foot strike angle is calculated as the angle between the vector AB and the anteroposterior axis (sagittal plane). The FSA in the resting position is subtracted from all values ​​so that 0 degrees corresponds to the flat foot.

Challenges to the determination of the foot strike

First, with the forearm, a person can sit on the foot and not the heel at all, or he can sit on the foot and fall on the heel. In this guide, both patterns are classified as FFS.

Second, 11 out of 45 left and 13 out of 45 right-footed runners in this study made the first contact with the heel, but the upper load occurred in the middle of the foot. This can add some confusion: should a foot strike be related to the first contact or the loaded contact limit?

Should you change your foot strike?

If you work comfortably without injury, it probably isn’t. People who are considering changing their foot strikes are usually top athletes and runners who suffer from severe foot pain. Remember: there is no proof that one foot is better than the other!

This study has shown that changing your strike pattern can actually lead to increased damage.

Don’t think about this and let your body do what comes naturally when choosing a foot strike pattern.

If, however, you insist on changing the foot strike, do it carefully and listen to your body. Which will help work out in the form of running, cadence, overstriding and strength training. If you are a back foot striker, sometimes increasing cadence and lowering the brightness does it and you may see your claim approaching midfoot or even a previous strike.

Heel fall and foot strain

Which may also help with overuse (and, therefore, foot strike) to pay attention to heel drop. It may help you to reduce excess weight in both heel strike and front strike.

How can you prepare for your foot strike?

  • Here are some tips to help you improve your foot strike:
  • Stop exaggerating.
  • Look at your cadence and see if there is room for improvement.
  • Watch the heel fall.

Make your own running videos. Then watch them slow down.


Here is what happened. Is there anything that can be fixed? Your ankle should be below the knee flex when you hit the ground.

Strength exercises, basic exercises, plyometrics, mobility tests, everything intended to improve your movement are widely accepted.

Footprints and running shoes

You should definitely consider your foot strike when buying running shoes.

First, you need support and protection wherever you go.

Second, because you don’t have to pay for things you can’t use.

Third, choosing the shoes that are best for you, why not save some?

Keep in mind that, if in doubt, brands usually specify which strike for each shoe is on their website.

Footsteps Features of running shoes

Look for shoes that provide adequate support and protection beforehand. This means lowering and maybe even a rock plate (if you are a trail runner).

Avoid shoes that are too high on the heel: you will be paying for a glossy technology that you will not use (gel packs, stabilizing ingredients, etc.).

Look for neutral shoes about the lack of dedicated technology set on the front or back. They may weigh you down and you will be paying more for the shoe.

Find shoes tied at the heel. Touch is powerful and you need the right amount of support. Pay special attention to this if you are a great runner (see a selection of running shoes for great runners) or have different stabilization needs (small excess or large excess).

Frequency of RFS, MFS and FFS

Back foot strike is the most common foot strike. Numerous studies have shown that.

All these courses are conducted in different races. Here are the results:

  • Japan half marathon (coming to an end) [1]

Result: Number of runners: 415

Back foot strike: 74.9%

Medium strike: 23.7%

Previous strike: 1.4%


  • Top 50 top marathon runners in Japan [1]

Result: Number of runners: 50 fastest runners

Back foot strike: 62.0%

Medium strike: 36.0%

Previous strike: 2.0%


  • 10k point in manchester marathon [2]

Result: Number of runners: 286

Back foot strike: 87.8%

Medium strike: 3.1%

Previous strike: 1.4%

7.7 per cent were asymmetrical


  • 32k points for Manchester marathon [2]

Result: Rearfoot strike: 93%

Medium strike: 3.5%

Previous strike: 0

3.5 per cent were asymmetric


  • 8k points in Milwaukee Marathon [3]

Result: Number of runners: 1,991

Back foot strike: 93.7%


  • 8km point in 50k trail race [4]

Result: Number of runners: 165

Back foot strike: 85%


  • 16k, 90k, finish point in the 100-mile race [5]

Result: 16k back foot strike: 79.9%

90k rearfoot strike: 89.0%

161k rearfoot strike: 83.9%


In conclusion, the foot Strike unlimited guide is a very accurate way to determine a foot strike. These sensors are often used in specialized labs and offices dedicated to athletes. When you plan an appointment, you are in the hands of a professional.

To get more tips to click here.

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