Is running with a high cadence really that important?

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A cadence (strides per minute) of about 180 is often cited as being the ideal for runners, but it varies according to pace – marathon pace is lower than 5K pace, for example. It’s thought that if cadence is too slow, you may be more likely to get injured, as longer strides mean a slower, heavier impact and there’s more chance of overstriding.

Effective cadence needs to be coupled with strong leg power for good form and efficiency – a quick, shuffling cadence won’t get you anywhere fast. I don’t give much thought to my cadence, though I feel it changing at certain speeds. I suppose it could be worth analysing yours if you feel it’s affecting your performance or that it could be contributing to injury problems. Fast-feet drills can help build cadence.