This study investigated the mechanical effects that cycling has on running style which may explain the discomfort associated with the transition from cycling to running. The joint angles, angular velocities, reaction forces, and reaction moments of the left and right hip, knee, and ankle joints as well as stance time, flight time, stride length, and maximum vertical displacement of the center of gravity were measured using high-speed video and ground reaction force data. Data were collected from 11 competitive biathletes and triathletes. Each subject's running mechanics were determined from 10 trials for each of three conditions: (a) unfatigued, (b) immediately following 30 min of running, and (c) immediately following 30 min of bicycling. The results indicate that a person's running mechanics, as described by the variables above, are virtually unchanged between each of the three conditions. Therefore, awkwardness of the bicycle-to-run transition may not be related to a change in running mechanics.
The authors are with the College of Physical Education, Athletics, and Recreation, University of Delaware, Newark, DE 19716.