Could the hammer analogy be the key to speed?
Elite sprinters deliver a forceful punch to the ground. New research finds that world-class sprinters attack the ground to maximize impact forces and speed.
The world’s fastest sprinters have unique gait features that account for their ability to achieve fast speeds, according to two new studies from Southern Methodist University, Dallas.
The new findings indicate that the secret to elite sprinting speeds lies in the distinct limb dynamics sprinters use to elevate ground forces upon foot-ground impact.
“Our new studies show that these elite sprinters don’t use their legs to just bounce off the ground as most other runners do,” said human biomechanics expert and lead author on the studies Ken Clark, a researcher in the SMU Locomotor Performance Laboratory. “The top sprinters have developed a wind-up and delivery mechanism to augment impact forces. Other runners do not do so.”