Back in 2015 myself and a few dear friends decided to walk 107km without stopping.
You may think I was stupid….I thought that A LOT on the day. With a heatwave, wearing running trainers and the longest walk in our training was 30km so not even a third.
Ironically we were all quite fit….but not walking fit.
Needless to say it was definitely the most difficult things I have done in my life. (but I’d probably mostly likely do it again!)
The reason why I’m talking about it?
I love feet and always have! (not in a fetish way but in a movement way) When I was training for the walk, my dear friend Edita commented on my short strides.
I hadn’t even noticed!
I have been doing some more reading and study recently on fascia and feet with the EBFA and here are a few points to consider for your stride length.
1. Short strides don’t allow our tissues are to recoil like elastic bands and create elastic energy. (think back to GCSE physics).
We need the rotational movement of walking to load to generate that energy like a spring. (When you thinking of rotation in walking it’s the smaller rotations that create the arm swing and the optimal change from one foot to the other. If you watch someone walking you may notice the small rotations, or not if they may be restricted in their hips and upper back.
2. Your tissues adapt to demand.
Those constant short strides changes the demand of the connective tissues and areas of neglected tissue become dehydrated and you lose the springy-ness in your step.
3. Our lifestyles aren’t often geared for full stride lengths.
We shuffle around the house to the car and around work. When was the last time you took a big stride when walking? If you have a little one then your shuffles become micro shuffles as you are walking at their pace.
This quote I heard when listening to a webinar recently puts all this together in one sentence. It was for movement professionals which is why my explanations are a little longer and easier to understand!
“walking is designed to hydrate our integrated fascial systems through the coiling and uncoiling of rotations or spirals that are powered by the potential energy of impact forces” Dr Emily Splichal
How do you know if you have short strides?
The easiest way is to feel the difference between your walk to the car and back and then take long walk outside. Do you notice the difference? Chances are you will!
You may have short strides and not have these signs and that’s fine. If you are feeling pain our tightness around your pelvis, hips, upper back or ankles looking at your gait maybe the first giant leap into moving and feeling better.
How to make a difference in your walking?
The easiest way is to get out their and walk. No bags, free arms and find a lovely outdoor space.
This was talking form one of my favourite walks this year in Palanga, Lithuania with Zoom Fitness