UK Runners Too Stiff to Win at London Olympics

UK Runners Suffer from Stiff Upper Hips

Tiburon, CA (PRWEB) July 24, 2012

Somax Performance Discovers
Whats Holding UK Runners Back

What's Holding Back UK Runners? from Somax Performance Institute on Vimeo.

Michael Rimmer's 94 Degree Stride Angle
Current UK runner has only a 94-degree stride angle compared to record-holder Sebastian Coe's 110-degree stride angle from decades ago.
Somax Performance Institute (, the world leader in analyzing, measuring and improving running mechanics, has found that British Olympic runners (with the exception of Mo Farah, who was born in Somalia) are much stiffer than British Olympic runners from 15-30 years ago, which explains why UK running records are 15-30 years old. Since their hips are also stiffer than foreign runners, their chances of winning at London 2012 are slim to none. Writers and bloggers analyzing the upcoming Olympics will want to keep their eye on the stride angles of the UK runners.

"The most important determinant of running speed is the stride angle," says Bob Prichard, Director of Somax Performance Institute. "The stride angle is the maximum opening between the lead and trailing upper leg at toe-off. Our research has shown that a runner increases their stride length 2% for every degree they increase their stride angle. This means that just a 5° difference in stride angle represents a 10% difference in how much ground a runner covers with each stride. Modern UK runners have stride angles that are on average 19° smaller than UK runners of 15-30 years ago, which means they are covering a phenomenal 38% less ground with each stride they take. No amount of over-training can make up for such a deficit. In fact, overtraining will only make it worse, as over-training and lifting weights actually reduce stride angle."

Microfibers and Stride Angle

Microfibers are a mild type of scar tissue that form in the connective tissue between the muscles as a result of the tension that arises from injury, overuse, illness and stress. Since they are scar tissue, these microfibers cannot be released by stretching.

The British have a reputation for stiff upper lips—now it seems their runners also suffer stiff upper hips. The tension required to 'keep everything inside' coupled with over-training has likely led to an increase in microfibers around the hip muscles of UK runners, which is restricting their stride angle.

While microfibers cannot be released by stretching, they can be released with Microfiber Reduction, a special type of connective tissue massage developed by Somax. Somax runners usually cut a minute per mile off their running pace in just a few weeks as their stride angle is increased.

An example of the improvements in running with Microfiber Reduction can be seen at

by Bob Prichard
About Somax Performance Institute

Since 1970, the Somax Performance Institute has helped athletes of all ages improve their performance by improving their efficiency. Its 17 Olympic athletes have won 44 Gold Medals and have set 11 World Records. Their pro golfers have won the US Open as a rookie, improved their putting from #113 to #1, quadrupled their tour income and increased their longest drive from 295 to 400. Their baseball players have increased their salary from $500,000 to $1.75 million after increasing their bases stolen, increased their long ball from 400 to 480, increased their velocity and strikes thrown, and reduced their 40-yard time from 4.9 to 4.27 seconds.


Bob Prichard
Somax Performance Institute
Email. bprichard(at)somaxsports(dot)com
Tel. +1-415-435-9880