Tips on how you can maximize your running performance

by Dr. Lev Kalika

Introduction: Running in ways that maximize your performance

lay out how you can do this pretty much on your own.

running performance

Running with and not against your body’s design

Running in a healthy way is not built into violating its limitations and winding up injured or worse.

Think for a minute about the things that can influence how you run:

know because they see people who’ve done this and show up in their offices with painful bone spurs and other issues caused by problem shoes.

Then there is the way in which people run. Most of us learn to run by watching and imitating others. The running role models we zero in on are not world class runners but local “athletic heroes” who run marathons or track in school, or just folks who jog in the neighborhood.

We also learn from feedback coming from our bodies, something that can disto slam the ground hard with their feet but think all is well because it no longer hurts.

OK, so running correctly reduces the risk of injury and pain, and also tends to a gait analysis lab (such as the one at the clinic I head up).

Coaches and scientists naturally break the human running stride into account the interactions that occur between feet, legs, hips and more (What is technically known as “biomechanics”).


In order to first look at the flow of bodily events involved in running.

We can begin with the foot and its role in running. Normally, the foot makes initial contact with the ground on its the outside edge. Many runners, however, land on their heels which is not good insofar as this involves more effect to brake and lowers the initial impact peak
Additionally, when the foot lands it should do so in a way that makes maximum use of the to “recharge”.

The best way to fully supporting one’s body. Given the fact initial contact occurs on the outside of the foot, bodily support will logically shift inwardly.

After the recharge phase, one propels forward starting with the foot beginning to propel forward from the hip.

During this process, the calf and Achilles tendon goes from a relaxed or neutral position to rage with ground impact and its release upon take off.

One thing tored and released.

As your foot comes in toes). If you produce a strong hip extension you will enjoy greater speed.

Now, as you come off the ground your goal is too vertical.

Once your hip is extended, the recovery phase begins. When extended correctly a natural stretch reflex mechanism kicks in. A combination of this with the lower leg’s own built-in mechanical properties ensures the recovery aspect will happen auto the center of your body and directly underneath the knee.
Things to the ground such that it lines up with your center of gravity.

Also to be avoided is extending the lower leg slightly and then pulling it back in a paw-like (“pawback”) manner before making ground contact. This utilizes the hamstrings and other muscles more than is necessary which wastes energy. Instead, the leg should simply unfold and drop underneath you.

Of course, the lower and upper body interact so we cannot neglect the latter. What you want to reach maximum knee height before starting downwards. In similar fashion, when your arm is at its maximum backwards position you should make sure the opposite leg and hip are at fully extended backwards (before your arm switches directions and swings forward).

As your arms swing make sure they do so from your shoulders and do not turn or sway. When your arm is making a forward upswing make sure the angle decreases slightly and keep your fists relaxed and not clinched. Then, on the backswing your arms should swing back behind your hip joint.

The proper and coordinated use of the arms and legs is vital to be “off kilter” or another part of the body that is affecting the arm or leg in question).

Above all it is vital to account how body parts and limbs interact and intermesh.

proper running check points


Begin well below the flare-up line and slowly increase your activity (But make sure to map out each step ahead of time). Do more each new day than you did on the day before.


As you increase your activity the flare-up line will inch upwards. In short it will take longer to trigger a flare-up because you are training & conditioning your brain and body in a nonthreatening way.


As you steadily boost your activity the protect-by-pain line will rise upwards, reflecting the fact your pain sensitivity is decreasing.


With slow, ever increasing activity done on a daily basis your tissues will strengthen and with this your tolerance line will move upwards.

NTT New tissue tolerance line

FUL Flare-up line

BL Baseline

NPBP New tissue tolerance line

Advice at-a-glance:

Running properly is important but so is insuring a running form that maximizes performance. Many people approach this by breaking their running stride into refining ones running form while running.

To pull this off, you would focus on one simple task while doing low stress running such as putting your feet down, extending your hip, etc., and then make modest changes and look for improvements and changes (good or bad) to other body functions. Then you make additional changes and watch for those that are good for the whole. You then repeat these moves until they become ingrained.

Many runners find that this process works best when they do short strides and identify and focus one aspect of running form at a time. It may help to Sports Medicine page ).

Finally, after having settled on and implemented changes that result in improvements to run under stress (such as you do when in a race or marathon). Many runners find that some old bad habits emerge once again while running under stress. If you do have such old ways reemerge, focus of working on these problem areas by consciously imposing the changes you made while running under non-stress conditions. With gradual, consistent effort your target changes in running form should become second nature for you in both non-stress and stressful running settings.

Reactive Neuromuscular Training on Kineo


Kineo – the most versatile muscle testing using artificial intelegence


Kineo – the most versatile muscle testing using artificial intelegence


Kineo – the most versatile muscle testing using artificial intelegence


In this instance, an athlete was originally diagnosed with minor quadriceps muscle strain and was treated for four weeks, with unsatisfactory results. When he came to our clinic, the muscle was not healing, and the patients’ muscle tissue had already begun to atrophy.

Upon examination using MSUS, we discovered that he had a full muscle thickness tear that had been overlooked by his previous provider. To mitigate damage and promote healing, surgery should have been performed immediately after the injury occurred. Because of misdiagnosis and inappropriate treatment, the patient now has permanent damage that cannot be corrected.

The most important advantage of Ultrasound over MRI imaging is its ability to zero in on the symptomatic region and obtain imaging, with active participation and feedback from the patient. Using dynamic MSUS, we can see what happens when patients contract their muscles, something that cannot be done with MRI. From a diagnostic perspective, this interaction is invaluable.

Dynamic ultrasonography examination demonstrating
the full thickness tear and already occurring muscle atrophy
due to misdiagnosis and not referring the patient
to proper diagnostic workup

Demonstration of how very small muscle defect is made and revealed
to be a complete tear with muscle contraction
under diagnostic sonography (not possible with MRI)


Complete tear of rectus femoris
with large hematoma (blood)


Separation of muscle ends due to tear elicited
on dynamic sonography examination

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