Effects of level running-induced fatigue on running kinematics: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Review written by Dr Carlo Wood info

Key Points

  1. Under fatigue, peak tibial acceleration increased, but there was no significant change in shock attenuation between the tibia and head and between the tibia and sacrum.
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BACKGROUND & OBJECTIVE

Running-related injuries are thought to be caused by training load errors (i.e. doing too much, too soon) and running kinematics. High impact forces and changes in attenuation of ground reaction forces (GRF) with fatigue, are expected to result in overuse injuries. With a better understanding of running kinematics, it is possible to improve our understanding of the etiology of running-related injuries.

Higher peak accelerations due to fatigue indicate increased risk of overuse injuries. Peak accelerations of body segments are mostly caused by poor eccentric contractions. It is hypothesized that fatigued runners adopt a stiffer gait pattern to save energy, creating higher GRFs. A stiffer gait pattern would result in:

  1. Increased peak accelerations.
  2. Decreased shock attenuation.
  3. Decreased change in vertical center of mass (COM) displacement.
  4. Decreased joint flexion angles.

The aim of the review was to provide an overview of kinematic changes due to running-induced fatigue.

It is hypothesized that fatigued runners adopt a stiffer gait pattern to save energy, creating higher ground reaction forces.
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An increase in knee flexion at initial contact increases the oxygen cost of running and is energetically costly.

METHODS

  • For this systematic review, electronic databases were searched.
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