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I was thinking about how we could help you the most straight away because I know a lot of you run with your sports and even if you don’t, the same principals apply to walking pain free and saving your knees for life as well.

It’s cool to know how to de-load legs because knees get rusty on almost everyone. Shins cop a hiding as well leading to shin splints and even stress fractures which is not great! So there are a few ways to put less pressure through legs, be more efficient and back off pain straight away for both walking or running.

The first is:

  • Shorten your stride


Seems simple, but it’s massive. If your stride is quite long the leverage forces going through knees can be over twice body weight with each step.

I want you to STOP and THINK about the math… 

75kg person taking 10000 steps a day x 356 Days a year = 3,650,000 STEPS A YEAR AT 2X BODY WEIGHT…150KG!

It’s mind boggling and no wonder most people wreck knees or get injured!

Shortening stride can decrease that force by half. Big change.

The second strategy is:

  • Lean

Think of your body position. The best runners lean forward from their ankles. Our ultrarunners are masters at this because they need to be optimally efficient to run for days on end (it also saves their joints)!

It doesn’t matter what the speed ‘SLOW or FAST’ the lean is one of the most important elements. 

For example: Eliud Kipchoge had about 6 degrees of forward lean in his sub 2 hour marathon. Most of us won’t need that much. To put less pressure through knees with walking, the lean is awesome too, but tiny! Only about 1 degree!! 

The third strategy is:

  • Aim to land mid foot

There are a lot of heal strikers out there.


The heal strike is often associated with overstriding. It will brake your forward momentum and then this can cause you to sink through the knees. It bleeds efficiency and costs you energy and time. Remember, foot contact point is related to your body position.

If you heal strike you are probably a little too upright – Try adjusting your lean (from ankles…not hips which is the biggest mistake people make when they start).


With walking heal striking is normal, just try to be lighter and use less of a heal on landing.

Your legs will often feel better pretty quick.

If you get going with these three strategies (below), then you are ready to start tweaking and refining the nitty gritty of running or walking.


  • Shorten your stride
  • Lean
  • Aim to land mid foot

If you found this article helpful check out our useful videos on the Youtube channel:

Also check us out on Facebook where you can say hi and get your questions answered:

Until next time,

Paul Trevethan

PS: If you want to get run technique spot on from the get-go, we do full running technique assessment programs with video analysis in the clinic or remotely via Skype.

Message us to book or for more info.

PS: Appreciate if you would help spread the word so we can ease a bit of pain, one human at a time. 

To book an appointment contact us at [email protected] or 07 3847 8040



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