20 Before After

Running Technique Error #3: Heavy Foot


Add this critical technical running error into your list – And it’s A MUST:

Is one foot landing much heavier than the other?

How often have you really listened to the pounding of your feet or client’s feet on the treadmill… I mean really listened intently? Apart from discovering that some people generally run much heavier than others (regardless of their actual body weight), you may hear one foot landing more heavily than the other as a consistent pattern. This is a concern because the legs are designed to take even weight (50/50).

Asymmetry of loading may be due to a few different factors:
+ Excessive Right or Left sided dominance,
+ Doing lots of certain sports or jobs that are very one-sided

and the great problem-child that hangs around….

+ History of Injury (has there been a significant injury to one of the legs in the past??).

The last factor is the most concerning because it usually means that the brain has learnt to habitually protect one side, and load heavier on the other. This seems to be a classic ingredient for new overuse injuries to develop.

As long as noticeable strength, mobility or stability deficits are not present, the great coaching challenge is to bring awareness (“proprioception”) to the client of the asymmetry, so they can gradually train themselves out of the bad habit.

Here’s to even loading through your legs!


Oh, so here is the revised full list of Running Technique Errors in order of difficulty to correct (in italics are the ones have now covered):

#1 Overlapping feet (easiest)
#2 Hunched upper body
#3 One foot too heavy
#4 Lazy lifting swing phase
#5 Foot flicking behind
#6 Over-striding front foot (hardest)