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  • Writer's pictureLuke Nelson

The Hip & increasing Cadence: A Double-Edged Sword🗡

The Hip & increasing Cadence: A Double-Edged Sword🗡

Recent research has delved into the effects of increasing one’s cadence on the hip joint & surrounding muscles, & the results offer both promise & caution. 📊

📈Benefits of a 10% Increase in Cadence:

  • Reduction in peak hip adduction torque. 💪

  • Diminished loading on the hip. 🏋️‍♂️

  • Decrease in peak hip internal rotation torque. 🔄

  • Reduction in peak hip flexion angle. 📐

  • Reduced workload for the muscles active during the stance phase. 🦵

⚠️Yet, Not All Benefits Are Universal:

Contrary to the above advantages, Lenhart’s study highlights an upsurge in force exerted by certain muscle groups with a heightened cadence:

  • Early Swing Phase Muscles: Iliacus, rectus femoris, sartorius, tensor fascia latae, gluteus minimus, and adductor brevis. These muscles exert more effort to propel the swing leg forward. 🚶‍♂️

  • Late Swing Phase Muscles: Hamstrings and gluteus muscles, which work intensively to decelerate the leg just before it makes contact with the ground. 🛑

In Conclusion:🤔

Before making any alterations to your cadence, it’s essential to identify the specific areas you wish to alleviate and the areas that might bear increased strain. A nuanced approach to cadence adjustment can help ensure optimal hip health and performance. 👟🏃‍♂️

👋 Runners & health professionals, like & share this if you learnt something!


  • Heiderscheit, B. C., et al. (2011). “Effects of step rate manipulation on joint mechanics during running.” Med Sci Sports Exerc 43(2): 296-302.

  • Lenhart, R., et al. (2014). “Hip Muscle Loads During Running at Various Step Rates.” J Orthop Sports Phys Ther: 1-30.

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