Metronome for Runners
WHAT IS A METRONOME?
A metronome is a gadget that keeps timing in beats per minute.
Modern metronomes are mostly digital, can be clipped to a running belt, shirt collar or in your hand, so you can hear the beep easily.
They’re most often used by musicians to help them play at the right timing for the song. For runners, they serve a similar purpose. It’s all about the timing of your stride.
You should be aiming to land one of your feet on each beep.
WHY SHOULD RUNNERS USE A METRONOME?
Why does the timing of your stride even matter? Well, learning how to run to a metronome will help to improve your cadence, otherwise known as your foot turnover.
The better your cadence, the less your ground contact time. That means your feet will spend less time engaging with the ground, the less leg power you require to push off.
Less time in contact with the ground also means healthier joints. The less time you spend on the ground, the less impact and compressive forces your joints have to deal with, leading to a reduced chance of injury.
What's an ideal cadence?
The experts all say 90 steps per minute (SPM), which means hitting the ground with your left or right foot 90 times a minute. (Sometimes people will say 180, which just combines the two feet.)
Isn't the beeping annoying?
You probably would resent the beep if can’t get the timing right.
But when you are in line with the beep, everything else seems to be going well: posture is good; focus is forward; core is engaged; legs are light. You are good, just running to your own beep.
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