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How to improve running efficiency with Skillrun 7000

Technogym confirms its close connection with the world of sports performance with its presence at NSBCA and Asepreb; the most important 2019 events for elite basketball. Skillrun 7000 is the perfect tool to support the athletic trainers of the NBA and Spanish League for the athletic preparation and rehabilitation of athletes. No other treadmill has ever been able to measure so many parameters with such precision, this enables analysis and evaluation of the athlete's running gait, aimed at improving competitive performance, or the return from injury. Technogym has been supporting professional sport for some time now with cutting-edge solutions for professional training.

NBSCA Sports performance Summit and II second Congreso Asepreb de preparacion Fisica en Baloncesto

The NBSCA Sports performance summit 2019 was held in the prestigious location of the Palmer House Hotel in Chicago and is organized by the NBSCA - National Basketball Strength & Conditioning Association, an association of athletic trainers with the mission to improve the level of athletic performance of players and NBA deductibles. The second Congreso de Preparaciòn Fisica en Baloncesto is an event organized by Asepreb in Barcelona, whose theme this year was Physical preparation in modern basketball,
Both events are a corollary to the pre-draft combined, an important moment of choice by the NBA franchises of players from universities ready to make the big leap and become professionals. At this stage of the draft, managers draw up the eligibility list and can test the players themselves. Both events are functional to the work of the trainers of the most important teams, where they meet and discuss new training methods.

Efficient running for rehab and performance

In team sports such as basketball, knowing the efficiency that your athletes express in a fundamental pattern such as running is important for trainers. This is possible with Skillrun 7000, thanks to the live monitoring of the most important metrics to improve the efficiency of running.
These activities need technology that allows the trainer to do tests and training to quantify how the athlete runs. Dr. Francesco Cuzzolin, Research and Innovation Director of Technogym's Scientific Department, discussed the efficiency of running and how technology can improve the practice of running during two important workshops, events dedicated to elite athletic preparation in basketball: II Congreso Asepreb dedicated to athletic preparation for modern basketball held at the Institut Nacional d'Educació Física de Catalunya, and NBSCA Sports performance summit 2019 in Chicago with workshops entitled Running efficiency for rehab and performance - when technology improves practice.

Types of running

When it comes to running performance, you can approach it from a cardiovascular, neurological, methodological, psychological, physiological, anatomical, muscular and biomechanical point of view (John Kiely, 2017). There are 3 types of running to consider in team sports, which are usually combined and present when playing. Running in a steady state, where the metabolic economy is optimized (energy conservation). Sprinting, to produce power (power amplification) and running with frequent speed changes, requiring absorption of energy (power attenuation) during deceleration.

What happens to the movement of the body when you are injured?

In a rehabilitative subject, the biomechanics of running change completely, especially symmetry: for example, if the left limb is injured, the athlete will be led to load on the right. When you get hurt, your mechanical behaviour changes. In case of injury, the body increases stiffness, rigidity (the movement is less fluid), changes the distribution of the load, moves less, changes the direction of the load, protects the injured part and decreases the range of motion. In the retraining phase the athlete must readjust to a running gait that is efficient and having the biometric feedback information on the display is useful.

The problem of kinematic asymmetry and how to correct it with Skillrun 7000

Kinematic asymmetry is associated with a high risk of injury. For example, in the case of a simple running gait of an athlete, if their symmetry is not within certain functional limits, the athlete in question could be more prone to injury (Vagenas G., Hoshizaki B., A multivariable analysis of lower extremity kinematic asymmetry in running).
It is extremely difficult to check these metrics directly on players when they train or when they run back and forth on a playing field. Having immediate, visual feedback is very effective in correcting asymmetry. Skillrun's biofeedback is, therefore, a valuable tool for correcting kinematic asymmetry in athletes returning from injury.

Monitoring running symmetry is one of the most important features of the Skillrun 7000 biofeedback: in any running mode (steady state, etc.), the biofeedback on the screen monitors if the body uses more power from the right or left.

The “running rewired” workout

When an athlete gets hurt, it is necessary to "reprogram" them, reconnecting aspects of the body. They must be taught how to walk, run slowly, run hard, spur and accelerate: this is the beginning of the retraining phase. Yet, not all metrics are of equal importance for working in the retraining phase. The most useful ones are:

  • Ground contact
  • Flight time
  • Stride
  • Cadence
  • Symmetry
  • Running Power

1. Ground contact and flight time

More experienced athletes have shorter ground contact times. Studies show that the shorter the ground contact time, the greater the efficiency of the running stride. The ratio of ground contact to flight time is greater as running efficiency increases.

2. Stride and cadence

Runners with a shorter stride and high cadence develop lower mechanical forces with each foot strike during running gait and consequently have a lower risk of injury. Although there is no universal ideal cadence or stride length, there can be several dominant patterns, which can change with speed or acceleration.

3. Symmetry in running: why is it important?

The issue of symmetry is closely related to the distribution of body loads. Better load distribution brings undoubted benefits both for performance and injury prevention.

4. What does Running Power mean?

Power in physics is the amount of work developed over a unit of time. Power in running is the amount of force and speed that a runner exerts at a given moment and is calculated in Watts. Technogym's running power is the energy cost of running. If an athlete succeeds in lowering the value of the running power, at a given speed, it means that the running stride is more efficient, usually through a better cadence or a better time of contact. In the case of acceleration, the more power the athlete succeeds in delivering, the faster he is.
Running power is calculated with a formula of 4 four variables:

  • Speed
  • Cadence
  • Body weight
  • Slope

With Skillrun 7000 these metrics are monitored independently for left and right legs. Skillrun 7000's biofeedback allows the athlete and athletic trainer to check the most important race variables in real time. With biofeedback, you can see, among other things, the power of the race, the cadence, the time of flight, the time of contact with the ground, as well as the length of the stride.

In conclusion, running on a treadmill is no longer simply an alternative to outdoor running, but can improve the quality of training.

In conclusion, running on a treadmill is no longer simply an alternative to outdoor running, but can improve the quality of training. Testing any form of running, visual feedback, intelligent metrics detection, can make a fundamental contribution to a process of rehabilitation or retraining: these are some of the key features of Skillrun 7000.

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