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Trail-running shoes drop

The definition of trail-running shoes drop is the sole’s height difference between the heel and the toes. In this article you are told everything about trail-running shoes drop, from its precise influence on your stride to how to adopt a more natural stride!

What exactly is the drop?

Do you hear more and more about the drop of a shoe or you come across this expression when reading on rail-running? You have a vague idea of what it is and want to know more? It’s easy to understand!

The drop of a running shoe is very easy to measure: it is the difference in height between the back and the front of the shoe. The back is measured at the heel and the front at the toes.>It is easy to understand that this difference in height has a major impact on the runner’s stride. A bare foot has a zero drop since heel and front foot are at the same level.

On the other hand, try running with high-heeled pumps and you’ll realize that your stride is not natural!

This consideration of the drop of a running shoe is not really new but it has emerged in recent years when some runners have been willing to adopt a more natural stride and get closer to a zero drop.

This search for a minimalist or at least more natural stride has led some manufacturers to produce shoes with specific drops.

But we’ll see later that Cimalp had an even more clever idea …

How is that going to impact your stride?

The difference in height between the front and back of the shoe has a significant impact on the runner’s stride. The bigger the drop, the more important the impact on the heel. When the heel receives this impact, there is almost no damping function or at least a much lower damping than with the unrolling of the foot. This lack of damping then implies a larger shock wave that will spread to the leg and body. This induces joint pathologies all over the leg but also lumbar pathologies. We must also not neglect the vibrations on the entire muscle tendon chain, whether on the Achilles tendon, calf, quadriceps and others. The use of running shoes with a high drop can, sooner or later, lead to rather negative consequences on the health of the runner.

On the other side a reduced drop favours a more natural stride.

With a low drop, the front part of the foot is the first to be in contact with the ground, and it is much more flexible than the heel and so offers a much greater shock absorption capacity. As a result, the shock wave to be absorbed by calves, knees and thighs is reduced. This natural shock absorber technique is actually natural and also saves a lot of eneThis is why the gradual adoption of natural stride proves to be more beneficial in the long run, both for health and sports efficiency as, automatically, landing on our toes also gives us a much more efficient propulsion.

Nevertheless, this requires a different technique and a certain adaptation. With less support, proprioceptive reflexes are therefore more stressed, and with the shoe no longer bringing its rebound technology, the stride will be modified, the cadence will increase and other adjustments will happen in a completely natural way. Just like any activity, it’s a matter of habit and therefore some training is needed tomake the most of it.

This is easier for beginners because their stride is not influenced by bad habits. For those who are no longer beginners, the only method is a progressive method to get used to increasingly weak drops. That’s why Cimalp has chosen to launch an innovative concept with a progressive drop running shoe. In fact, these shoes lead the runner towards a gradual evolution for a more natural, less traumatic stride!

The Cimalp solution

This versatile and efficient trail shoe has been designed to welcome 3 different insoles, and therefore 3 different drops, to gradually help the rider to evolve to a natural stride and a lower drop.

With this progressive drop, this innovative running shoe allows runners to progress step by step to a more natural stride, without abruptly switching to a low drop, and risking short-term injuries. It will make sense to start with drop 8 (the red sole), then drop 6 (the orange sole) to gradually go to drop 4 (yellow sole). The transition from drop 8 to drop 4 is gradual and will depend on each one of us but this can be done over a period that will vary between 2 to 6 months.

In developing this progressive drop running shoe, CimAlp first wanted to think about comfort, versatility and adaptability to all types of runners. Finding the right shoe is never easy, but finding the ideal drop isn’t either.

In fact, the 864 model (the name comes from the available drops 8, 6 and 4 mm) is a versatile trail shoe featuring tremendous comfort and incredible grip thanks to its’ VIBRAM sole, also very resistant to abrasion. In conclusion, the innovative 864 trail-running shoe is the ideal model for demanding runners making no compromise between performance and comfort.