Date of Graduation

Spring 2018

Document Type

Honors Research Project

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science in Education


Exercise Science - PrePhysical Therapy

Research Sponsor

Laura Richardson

First Reader

Stacey Buser

Second Reader

Melissa Smith



PURPOSE: The purpose of this study is to determine if heel and forefoot striking influence on the amount and type of injuries in recreational female distance runners between the ages of 18 and 25. In addition, shoe type and training intensity were analyzed in relation to injury. METHODS: A quantitative, cross-sectional study was conducted anonymously utilizing The University of Akron’s Qualtrics survey tool. The survey was adopted based on Goss and Gross (2012). The survey was sent via email to members of the Zips Running Club, as well as other runners who fit the criteria to participate in the study. RESULTS: Although the greatest percentage (75%) of injuries occurred in those respondents who utilized a heel strike pattern, there was a non-significant p-value of 0.68 . About 46.67% of those who utilize stability shoes and 66.67% of respondents who utilized a cushioned shoe reported injuries. The p-value describing the relationship between shoe type and injury was 0.66, so the results are not significant. The p-value describing the relationship between training intensity and injury was 0.76, so the results are not significant. CONCLUSIONS: Although the results were not statistically significant, trends could be shown in data that related heel striking to injury. These results, could benefit runners, coaches, and health professionals as they determine whether a change in foot strike may help to prevent injury. With a larger sample size and a more accurate data collection method, this study could be improved to obtain statistically significant results.