Elite Crossfitter Saved by Air Runner Treadmill
Facing uncertainty over an ankle destined for surgery.. one of Australia’s best male Crossfitter’s took a leap of faith and purchased a machine designed for the one activity that caused the most grief for his ankle.. Running!!
Khan Porter is now running several times each week, for distances up to 8km, completely pain free. The ankle is not fixed.. but running on an Air Runner treadmill causes no harm to it.
Khan has been using the Air Runner treadmill for the past 10 months and is revelling in the added running fitness he has been able to tap into. A 4th place finish in the Australasia Region of the 2018 CrossFit Open is testament to the energy system building running provides.
The reason Khan can run without pain and limitation on the Air Runner treadmill compared with running outside is “impact force”. Every step you run is a repetition.. Every repetition results in impact force with the ground.. Each 400m interval you run will likely involve 400+ impacts with the ground.. The end result is a LOT of accumulated “impact force”.
A reduction in running impact force.. per step.. provides HUGE performance gains via energy conservation. It also results in less stress on commonly injured structures such as your achilles tendon, shins, knees and ankles.
The Air Runner treadmill does NOT reduce impact force with “cushioned” belts as other treadmills advertise. Similarly, Air Runner treadmills do NOT reduce impact force with magic gel, air pockets, fluid axis systems or ballistic rock shields like many shoe companies promote.
The curved belt of the Air Runner treadmill encourages an “under and behind” ground contact with the feet. In slow motion this can be seen as the feet travelling backwards at the point of contact with the belt.. close to, or under, the hip.
Impact force is reduced with an “under and behind” running technique.. both on the treadmill and when running outside. In Khan Porter’s case he has been able to master this “under and behind” contact with repeated use of his Air Runner treadmill.. And he has been able to add “quality” running mileage to his training.
But best of all.. When I first met Khan during his 2015 CrossFit Games prep he was as close to a fan of running as a carnivore is to lettuce. Now, however, not only is Khan not afraid of running.. He is actually enjoying it!!
Khan’s improved running ability and capacity will be on show when he tackles the Triple 3 event at the start of the Pacific CrossFit Regionals on Friday 1 June. Khan and his fellow competitors will Row 3km.. Perform 300 Double Unders.. Then Run 3 miles on the Air Runner treadmill he has become so comfortable with. A good result here will position Khan well in the race for one of 5 tickets to the CrossFit Games this August.
Tim Bransdon is a Podiatrist with a passion for strength and conditioning of feet.. Along with teaching you how to use the untapped potential of the 66 joints of your feet to run strong, run light, run well. Tim works with many of Australia and New Zealand’s best CrossFit athletes, including CrossFit Games Champion and Commonwealth Games gold medalist Tia-Clair Toomey. You can reach Tim via The Running Lab or his Wollongong Podiatry Clinic.