Gait Analysis For The Nike Women’s Half Marathon SF

Gait Analysis For Nike Women's Half Marathon San Francisco

(Courtesy of Nike)

Have you ever had a running gait analysis? I now have video of mine thanks to Nike Running.

On Sunday, October 19, I’ll be running the Nike Women’s Half Marathon in San Francisco! I’ll be attending the race courtesy of Nike as part of a media group. Along with the race, they’re helping me train and gear up for the event. Excited? You bet!

Gait Analysis

To help me gear up for the race, I got fit for shoes at the Nike Running store in New York City’s Flatiron district. I’ve had my gait analyzed four times before at various running stores and in physical therapy. I have it checked periodically in case my form has changed dramatically since I’ve gotten faster, been diagnosed with arthritis, injured my hip in a horseback riding fall, and all the other things that affect how I run.

But year after year, gait analysis shows I’m a steadfast neutral shoe runner. This time I have video proof.

But what does it mean to be a neutral shoe runner? Pronation is the natural inward motion of the foot as it rolls to absorb the shock of your step. Runners with normal arches tend to pronate naturally, with the foot rolling inward a bit during each step. Runners with low arches tend to overpronate, rolling inward too much.

Me? I barely pronate at all thanks to my high arches. Having high arches also makes me more likely to be a heel striker, landing on the back outer edge of my foot. And, yep, I’m a heel striker. All my race photos concur. If you want to learn more, Runner’s World has a great resource with videos that explain pronation in depth.

Gait Analysis For Nike Women's Half Marathon San Francisco

Nike Flyknit Lunar2 (Nike)

For me, this gait analysis means running in a neutral shoe that encourages a natural foot motion and has plenty of cushioning to help absorb shock, since my feet aren’t rolling enough to do it for me. I’ve been wearing neutral shoes since I started running and they’ve served me well.

After the gait analysis, I tried three pairs of shoes on the treadmill in store and settled on the Nike Flyknit Lunar2. I love the cushioned heel, Flyknit upper and soft ride. Plus, they come in my favorite color: purple. We’ll see how they fare for me.

Anyone can get a gait analysis with a video at Nike Running stores or via your own video on Twitter. I found it really cool to see my slo-mo run in action.

You Can Still Run The Nike Women’s Half Marathon SF

Now that I have my race day shoes, it’s time to get training. The Nike Women’s Half Marathon San Francisco is in 10 weeks, plenty of time to get into shape.

Gait Analysis For Nike Women's Half Marathon San Francisco

All downhill? (Courtesy of Nike)

I’m so incredibly excited for this one. I’ve never run a Nike race, and though I’ve been to San Francisco three times, I’ve never raced there. Knowing how hilly the city is, I’m not sure that this will be the race where I attempt my sub-2 hour half marathon. But Nike has a new course for the event, which they have yet to release. So I’ll wait to withhold judgement until I see it. Maybe it’ll be all downhill? A girl can dream.

The Nike Women’s Half Marathon in San Francisco is sold out. Runners were drawn from a lottery in June. But if you want to run the race, you can still register through charity and the race’s partner Team in Training through August 22. Team in Training still has bibs available for runners willing to raise money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Visit the link for more information.

Gait Analysis For Nike Women's Half Marathon San Francisco


You can also enter to win a Nike Women’s Half Marathon Training Package courtesy of Luna. One winner will get an all expenses paid trip to San Francisco for her and a friend, two entries into the race, Nike+ SportWatches, training and nutrition consultations with Luna pros, and, of course, lots of Luna bars. Visit the Luna Facebook page to enter.

As mentioned above, I’m attending the race courtesy of Nike as part of a media group. As always, all posts and opinions are purely my own. I’m always honest about my experiences. Seriously. For more information, read my Disclosure policy.

Karla Bruning


Karla Bruning is a race announcer at the TCS New York City Marathon + other major events, TV host for the New York City Triathlon + contributor to Shape, Redbook, Runner's World + other publications. She used to report for Newsweek but spent her free time squeezing in workouts. Now it's her job. She's run 8 marathons, 30 halves, 10 triathlons + open water swims. When she's not running, talking about running or writing about running, she's snuggling her baby, spoiling her dog + compulsively traveling.


08 2014

24 Comments Add Yours ↓

The upper is the most recent comment

  1. 1

    San Francisco looks like an insanely beautiful city! Enjoy! Sister and I are thinking of taking a trip to California sooner rather than later, so I look forward to your photos and race report.
    Sadye recently posted..RetirementMy Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      Cali and San Fran are worth the trip! It’s been 5 years since I’ve been, so I’m really looking forward to a return trip! I had a blast the last time I was there. The first time I went, a friend and I drove the coast from San Fran to San Diego. Highly recommend that trip!

  2. 3

    I have always wanted an in depth gait analysis, there is a place nearby that does extensive analysis with some other things but is very pricey. So cool you got this, and are going to CA for the race! Enjoy!!
    Laura @losingrace recently posted..Brick by BrickMy Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      Thanks!! Yes, there are labs in NYC that will do an in depth analysis for a pretty penny. So I appreciate the running stores that do it for free, even if it’s not as in depth as something you might get via physical therapy or at a running lab. The video is cool to have.

  3. 5

    Awesome gait analysis! Neutral runner with high arches here too :0) I haven’t tried running in Nike’s before, I’ve always been an ASICS girl. But I would definitely be willing to give them a try if they help to encourage a mid-foot strike!

    • Karla Bruning

      I’ll let you know how these work for me! I have dreams of being a mid-foot striker too.

  4. 7

    This race is on my bucket list.
    Went to the Luna page and entered. Hope I win.
    Abby @ BackAtSquareZero recently posted..Shine Activity Tracker ReviewMy Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      This race has been on my bucket list for a long time too. Hope you win the Luna contest too! You never know. Someone has to win! And I actually “know” two runners from the blogosphere who’ve won race trips in these kinds of contests. Maybe you’ll be next!

  5. 9

    I’ve been hesitant to get my gait analyzed by a shoe company because the last time I did, Asics tried to put me in support shoes, which are absolutely awful on my legs. Plus the guy had me run for literally only 10 seconds, which wasn’t even close to enough time for me to get into a rhythm. It felt like it was a scam to sell me a shoe and when that one didn’t work, I’d come back for a differnt kind. Or something.

    Nike is one of the only brands of running shoe I haven’t tried. Maybe I should give them a spin.
    Judith recently posted..Running FashionMy Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      That’s a bummer! This was a totally different experience. They had me set my own pace on the mill and run until I got into a groove, then tell them when to start the test. Then I was filmed for about 30 seconds. All in, I was probably on the treadmill for 2 minutes, since I took my time “hitting my stride” so to speak. Then I ran on the treadmill in ALL the shoes I tried on before I chose a pair. The whole process took about 45-minutes!

  6. 11

    I’m curious and would love to get my gait analyzed.

    You know how much I love my city by the bay. Have lots and lots of fun there.
    Elle recently posted..Giving it Another Tri: NYC TriathlonMy Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      Thanks! If you’re looking for new shoes, I highly recommend doing it.

  7. 13

    Prior to me being the Wellness Director at a Y here, I did gait analysis at a Fleet Feet down here. Still love it and moonlight on weekends when they need me!!
    Cheri @ Overactive Blogger recently posted..10 Fitness things I could not live without.My Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      What a great skill to have! That would be a good party trick.

  8. 15

    So cool! If you want to bring a friend, I’m totally in 😉

    I have a high arch and am a heel striker as well. Thankfully, I had a gait when I started running after baby and got I to the right pair of runners!
    Kaella (On The Run) recently posted..Things I’m Loving Friday 18- Birthday EditionMy Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      The right shoes makes such a difference, don’t they? When I started running, I don’t even think I had running shoes, but cross-trainers or something. Knowing my feet as well as I do know, it helps when picking out shoes.

  9. 17

    When I started running, I visited a running store where they told me about my gait after watching me run down the sidewalk, but this sounds like it would be much more accurate. Have fun training for the half!
    Tina@GottaRunNow recently posted..Your Race Reports! (8/8)My Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      Thanks, Tina! Yes, I’ve had analyses in the past where they just eyeballed. This was the first time they were actually able to show me on a video in store. Pretty cool!

  10. 19

    SF seems to have so many great races! I hope one day I can do one of them….just need to gt some expenses covered….so need to get my butt in gear to reach that level first 😉 Interesting about the gait analysis, it should help. I noticed a huge difference when I had the correct shoes for my feet. Hope the Nike work for you….although Saucony is much better ;P
    Tina Muir recently posted..Training Update #3: Turning a CornerMy Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      I had one pair of Saucony ages ago. When I started running, I ran in whatever old shoes I had around. Once I had my gait analyzed and got properly fit, what a difference! Hope you’re able to get out to SF someday too! Such a great city.

  11. 21

    I used to be the same, when I started running I had no clue about foot types and was taking the $20 bargains from Sports Authority. Haha. But proper shoe choice is SO important…glad you got some awesome new kicks to fuel those PR’s. :)

    • Karla Bruning

      Thanks! Yes, I used to get mine on sale at DSW. Not any more!

  12. 23

    I’m so excited for you to do this race!! I’ve wanted to do this one for several years but haven’t been able to due to work deadlines. I was able to do last year’s Nike Women’s DC race though and I loved it. I finally did a gait analysis and had similar results – high arches and heel striker!
    Emily recently posted..2014 Zooma ChicagoMy Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      Welcome to the high arch, heel striker club! I really wanted to do last year’s DC race, but couldn’t. Glad to hear you loved it! I’m super excited for this one…especially to see the new course!
      Karla Bruning recently posted..Race Report: William J. McCarthy Memorial SwimMy Profile


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