Uphill Running Increases Metabolic Cost
When running on level surfaces athletes use their techniques to minimize metabolic cost. Efficient running mechanics allows an athlete to participate at a high level longer as they compete in their perspective sport. Running efficiency is an important part of coaching, a skill that is essential and should always be under refinement, even during conditioning when the object is to heighten the difficulty of the drills to improve fitness.
Ramps, steps and hills are conditioning strategies used by coaches to enlarge the metabolic cost of, as well as strengthen the bodies and minds of their athletes. As the elevation rises effort and step frequency increase, step length decreases, all to maintain speed. As stride frequency increases there is elevated metabolic demand, greater oxygen consumption eliciting a greater heart rate need. Uphill running is a great drill to stress and improve the most skillful runners in any program.