Why Kenyans are Better Marathoners

I’ve written about this before, but modern sneaker technology, aka Nike, is actually doing more harm than good when it comes to protecting your feet on long runs.  But a new study backs this up.  “Daniel Lieberman at Harvard University and colleagues compared the gait of endurance runners in the US and Kenya and found that more than two-thirds of those who grew up running barefoot or had trained themselves to do so as adults ran on their tiptoes, landing on the balls of the feet first (Nature, DOI: 10.1038/nature08723). The trend is unusual: 80 per cent of endurance runners land heel-first.”

And you can see those results at the finish line of most major marathons.  Aside from that running heel-first is no good.  “It’s like someone hitting you on the heel with a hammer three times your body weight,” says Lieberman.

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