2. Heel Striking
Slow cadence often goes hand-in-hand with heel striking for many runners–or, as I like to think of it, your hips are behind your feet.
Imagine this: you cannot push off your foot when it is in front of your hips. Your hips must come over your feet in order to propel you forward.
Arsenault argues that “most people suffer from a poor sense of the relationship between timing of forward movement and foot contact on ground. This results in reaching the foot forward to land and pushing off too far from behind to propel.”
A lot of attention has been given to the barefoot and minimalist running movement. Arthur Lydiard, one of the most well respected coaches of our time, encouraged minimalist footwear decades ago. Why? To avoid heel striking. One of the advantages of running barefoot or in minimalist shoes is that it will hurt if you strike with your heel.
If someone asked you to sprint on pavement with little or nothing on your feet, you would likely run as you were intended to run. Try running on carpet, grass, or turf barefoot for short periods of time–20-seconds at first, working your way up to a minute or more, and let your body find its natural stride.