Ok sorry to mention Kangaroos again but.... I went for a longer run on Saturday as I try to do and on my merry way I came across a heap of roos, bounce bounce bounce, hmmm I started thinking about Erics description of running and how we are basically jumping (hope I have that right) Now roos are very graceful when they are going full swing and it looks effortless, their body is basically motionless and they just swing through with the legs, which optimises their energy retention (just like we need too). So I thought this might be able to help me with getting my forefoot strike right with my visualisation.. Im a very visual person and it helps me.... With that I have researched and researched on roos and running, it has led to the following..
They use their tendons very well as a spring to help them move as we should, the diagram below shows the roo and human legs and feet
The roos exaggerated foot and leg (well from ours) shows what should be happening very clearly... bounce bounce bounce...... The other interesting point on the roo is that they are so efficient at sprinting that on a flat surface they use barely any extra energy to go full speed than they do at a slow sprint, the reason they do not always travel at close to maximum speed is to avoid high tendon stress (recent research has shown they also have more mitochondria and blood vessels in their muscle to assist them) Dont worry though, the old roo does not cope any better with uphill stretches than us, so if your going to race one challenge it to a hilly route!
Then I tried to find a pic of human forefoot strike, now thats a challenge, especially for someone not in a full blown sprint and one that demonstrates (hopefully) the correct placement of the leg without over extension.... Its no wonder I didnt know heel striking was bad, the majority of things you see are all showing heel strike..... I ending up finding this one:
Thanks little buddy I can picture you in my head very easily.... now all I need to do is keep practicing and keep trying to transition my technique. This is proving a challenge and I seriously think I spend more time thinking than running when Im running ha! :)
please feel free to pull me up where I have things wrong!!!
Just for fun Ill include these bits and pieces I came accross:
This pic was about a robot being designed to move off a single spring
heres the robot