The ankle and foot together contribute to over half of the positive and negative work performed by the lower limbs during running. Yet, little is known about how foot kinetics change throughout a run. The amount of negative foot work may decrease as tibialis anterior (TA) electromyography (EMG) changes throughout longer-duration runs. Therefore, we examined ankle and foot work as well as TA EMG changes throughout a changing-speed run.
Fourteen heel-striking subjects ran on a treadmill for 58 min. We collected ground reaction forces, motion capture, and EMG. Subjects ran at 110%, 100%, and 90% of their 10-km running speed and 2.8 m/s multiple times throughout the run. Foot work was evaluated using the distal rearfoot work, which provides a net estimate of all work contributors within the foot.
Positive foot work increased and positive ankle work decreased throughout the run at all speeds. At the 110% 10-km running speed, negative foot work decreased and TA EMG frequency shifted lower throughout the run. The increase in positive foot work may be attributed to increased foot joint work performed by intrinsic foot muscles. ... mehrChanges in negative foot work and TA EMG frequency may indicate that the TA plays a role in negative foot work in the early stance of a run.
This study is the first to examine how the kinetic contributions of the foot change throughout a run. Future studies should investigate how increases in foot work affect running performance.