Here are 5 good articles and papers regarding running the curve in Track & Field.
I am referring to Lane 1 or Lane 8, 200m indoor tracks vs outdoor tracks, flat tracks vs banked tracks.
If you think that is bad, check out a track that has 19 laps to a mile! (an 84 meter track… don’t forget the extra 13 meters)
Curve Running & How to Race the Indoor Sprints
Curve running is an important aspect to sprinting as half your races over 200 meters on the oval track are on the curve.
if you take 50 strides in a 100 meters, then the curve is simply a series of 50 straight lines!
Should you treat curves the same as straightaways?
I’ll break this section of this article down into several parts:
- indoor curves: banked vs non-banked
- outdoor curves
- starting on the curve
- approaching the curve
- running the curve
- exiting the curve
Click here to read Curve Running & How to Race the Indoor 200m 300m 400m
The Effect of Banked Curves on Running Mechanics (2008)
The article was originally presented by the Canadian Society of Biomechanics in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada Aug 16-19 2006.
The intent of this study was to investigate the mechanics of curved running with and without banked surfaces on an indoor track.
In summary, despite clear evidence of whole body lean, minimal gross differences in running mechanics were observed in the lower limb. Possibly, this may in part be explained by prior adaptations of the subjects due to their habitual running within the same indoor track.
Click here to read The Effect of Banked Curves on Running Mechanics
Curve Running and 200 Meters in Lane 8? No problem!
I HATE it when people bitch about Lane 8, and I LOVE IT when people set a personal best or even World Record out of Lane 8.
Simply put, the curvature is less in Lane 8 than in Lane 1.
But you are running scared, as you have no idea where you are at, until Usain Bolt blows you away at 70 meters.
Click here to read Curve Running and 200 Meters in Lane 8? No problem!
Do Curves Matter? Indoor vs. Outdoor World Records
How much do the tight indoor curves affect your performance?
Even with the banked curves to counteract the centripetal forces, it does affect your stride length and stride frequency, and therefore your time will be slower.
Also, with banked curves, you have a slight uphill grade going into the curve, then a favorable downhill grade coming off the turn. Lane 6 for the 200m or 300m starts halfway on the curve, so you literally start the race downhill.
Click here for Do Curves Matter? Indoor vs. Outdoor World Records
The Effects of Track Turns on Lower Extremity Function (1987)
In this 1987 paper from the International Journal of Sport Biomechanics, they basically stated that injuries to the right and left leg extremity differ, with the right foot injuries being of the impact type and the left leg injuries being the over-pronation type.
Click here to read The_Effects_of_Track_Turns_on_Lower_Extremity_Function (PDF document, 3.9 Mb)