180 is Not a Magic Number


We’ve all heard that if you want to improve your running game, you should target a stride rate of 180 steps per minute. We’re not convinced.

Our favorite example is our head of engineering. At 6’5” we’re pretty sure a 180 stride rate is a physical impossibility. We took a look at data we captured at the 2015 TCS NYC Marathon to look into the correlation between stride rate and finish times.

What we like about this chart is how everyone’s individual story is reflected in each data point. There really isn’t a strong correlation between time and step rate, each person gets to 26.2 miles their own way.

What was really exciting to us is how flight ratio is much more strongly correlated to finish times – much more so than contact time and the 180 stride rate rule.