The Importance of Running Cadence

Man in active wear running through nature

With the warm weather finally upon us, many of us are itching to get outside and get active by jogging. Many people choose running as an exercise for cardiovascular health because of it’s easy access: all you need are a pair of running shoes! However, like any activity, sport, or exercise, technique and how we train matters, you can injure yourself if you are not careful.

Have you just taken up running but now are experiencing pain? One of the biggest mistakes people make when starting to run is improper cadence. Cadence is the number of steps per minute that an individual takes during their run. Novices in running generally have a low cadence, around 130-150 steps per minute. Running at this low cadence rate often corresponds with a heel-strike gait pattern, which places a lot of impact stress on the knees and hips. Try increasing your cadence to 160-180. This will often lead to a more mid-foot striking gait pattern, which allows the muscles in your lower chain to absorb more of the impact forces of running.

There are many apps out there that can track your cadence, ranging from simple metronome apps to fancy apps that sync your music to your preset cadence. Want to learn more about cadence, proper running techniques, or need some help with alleviating your running injuries? Contact us and tell us about your running!

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