The influence of flexibility on the economy of walking and jogging

J Orthop Res. 1990 Nov;8(6):814-23. doi: 10.1002/jor.1100080606.


The relationship of 11 measures of trunk and lower limb flexibility to the economy of treadmill walking and jogging as measured by steady-state oxygen consumption (VO2) was studied. Subjects (38 women, 62 men, aged 20-62 years) were tested at six speeds between 53.6 and 187.7 m/min. By combining scores from all flexibility tests, and beginning at speeds of 107.3 m/min, the "tightest" third used significantly less O2/m/kg (9%, p less than 0.05) than the "loosest" third, with "normals" in between. Two tests, trunk rotation and lower limb turnout, gave the best separation for walking/jogging economy, with the "tightest" third differing significantly from the "loosest" (8-12%) at all speeds tested (ANOVA with Scheffe). We conclude that nonpathological musculoskeletal tightness was associated with a decreased steady-state VO2 for treadmill walking and jogging.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Biomechanical Phenomena
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Jogging*
  • Leg / physiology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Muscles / physiology*
  • Oxygen Consumption
  • Rotation
  • Sex Characteristics
  • Walking*