Could there be a new way to run?
if you want to run away from a hungry carnivore on the savanna, but if
you are running on an artificial level flat surface—perhaps there is.
is a precedent for a different approach in an artificial setting. The
Fosbury flop is a "back to the bar" high jump method that is better
done in an artificial setting with a nice cushion than in a natural
wonder if lifting ones feet more than necessary above the ground is
inefficient when on a perfectly flat surface. You need to lift your
feet and place them down in long grass or on a slope or where you are
not certain of the surface. Have a look at a 4 legged animal running
fast. The front feet lift and place down presumably to avoid a tumble
but the hind legs do not lift as much. The animal would waste
energy lifting the rear legs when there is no need to because a
rear leg trip is unlikely.
was watching a slow motion film of a lion bounding along. The front
feet were projected in front of the place they would land and gathered
relative rearward speed before they hit the ground. When they did hit
they imparted forward momentum.
is an example of imparting momentum by striking something with excess
speed. Imagine you want to spin a bicycle wheel using two hands.
Try "running" on the wheel with your hands. As you speed up you use a
lot of energy just moving your arms at the speed of the wheel. Now try
using a slower rhythm but "hitting" the wheel with sharp fast moving
blows. I bet you get the wheel to turn faster with this method than
with any other and use less energy doing it.
50 years ago as an overweight 12 year old I walked what I was told
was a measured mile (4 times around an oval) and was surprised that
took only about 12 minutes. Being overweight there was no way I could
have run the mile in 12 minutes but perhaps with a sort of fast walk I
could do a lot better still. I was not walking in a "race" correct
way as both feet were off the ground at the same time. Using
stiff legs and big strides I found that I could speed up and that at a
certain speed I covered a lot of ground with little effort. After a
party one night I used a similar method and did well in a race
down the street. I can still remember that my body was upright and not
moving up and down, my stride was long, my legs stiff and each foot
fall was a brief impact (with some heel) that imparted
forward momentum. Just like spinning a wheel with "hits" I made the
ground speed by under me. It was not very tiring and I could feel the
pressure of the wind balancing my effort. It may just have been
the party "spirit" but it was a memorable experience.