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When it comes to fine-tuning the mechanics of walking and running, people often spend too much time focusing on their legs and neglect their feet. But this is wrong. Feet are the interface between you and the ground. Learning how to increase the number of times they touch -- a concept called turnovers -- can have a big impact on your stride. "Developing fast feet is one way we train our nervous system to better control The muscles involved in walking and running," writes running coach Peter Maggill in his new book, "The Extreme Runner." What was the result? Walk and run faster, more easily and comfortably.
Walkers and runners tend to think that fast turnover comes from the speed at which your feet move through the air and return to the ground. But studies show that the opposite is true: it takes about the same amount of time for everyone to reposition their legs in the air; The difference between a slow jog and a record sprint is the amount of time your feet stay on the ground. "Having fast feet means how quickly, forcefully and effectively you apply force to the ground to move forward," Maggill said. Reducing time on the ground requires rapid power generation. According to Magill, there are three factors that contribute to fast feet: muscle strength (especially in the legs and core), reduced muscle inhibition and elastic recoil. Muscle power generates the force that propels you forward. Reducing inhibition improves coordination between relative muscle groups, making movement smoother and faster.
So how do you develop these accelerators? Maggill recommends three sessions, one for each unit. Depending on your training and experience level, incorporate them into your daily routine 1-3 times a week.
Three exercises to help you grow your feet quickly.
1) Jump faster to improve muscle strength
Fast jumps train your body to combine powerful, lightning-fast muscle contractions with spring-like tendons (" elastic recoil ") so you can get back in the air as soon as possible after each jump. This reduces the amount of time your feet spend on the ground when you walk and run, resulting in larger, faster, and more efficient strides per minute. Pay attention to your form. "If you're starting to lose form, it's time to jog back to the starting line," Magill says.
2) Direct marching improves muscle inhibition.
This exercise reduces the tension between your thigh muscles. This will allow you to lift your knees higher and return your legs more smoothly, which will allow you to generate power faster. Your hamstrings learn to close as your quadriceps and gluteus maximus lift your knees, and your hamstrings and gluteus maximus learn to close as they pull your legs back to the ground.
3) Ankle zuma, improved elastic recoil.
"Running without a stiff ankle is like a car with a flat tire," says J.B. Morin, PhD, professor of exercise science at the University of Nice antipolis in France, who studies human movement and performance. Shoes help increase the stiffness of tendons, allowing your body to react and bounce quickly instead of squeezing and rolling with every step.
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