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Proper Running Form


photo credit :: bridget

colloseumGot caught in the rain with a dog and his owner today. The three of us started the walk understanding that we could get caught in the rain. But still we didn’t bring umbrellas or coats. Call it stubborn, call it stupid, call it not taking the rain seriously. The dog, who has already appeared on TOE no less than twice, wanted to walk regardless of the rain. But if it started to thunder and lightning, he would be the first to hightail it back to familiar grounds, believe me.

Even before it started raining, the dog’s owner was talking about the proper form for running. I’ve always been interested in discovering the proper form when it comes to running. Form is 90% of being athletic. If you have good form, you don’t need much muscle. But what do I know? I’m just someone who didn’t know the proper way to run until I got caught in the rain with a man and his dog.

As it turns out, what I’ve been doing wrong this whole time is lifting my knees. I was under the impression that to run far efficiently and fast, the higher I lifted my knees, and the quicker I picked my striking TOEs off the ground, the better I’d manage.

It’s not like I was doing anything seriously wrong, like running on my heels, which is basically the same thing as fighting yourself, running against your own momentum, which is precious.

That’s right. Momentum is precious. Once you get hold of momentum, you’re untouchable. It’s like jumping out of a plane and hitting terminal velocity. That’s exactly what momentum is,

hitting terminal velocity.

Every time I run, I know the precise moment when I get hold of momentum. I take its reigns and go along for the ride. Exhilaration. But picking your knees up gets in the way of your own momentum. Picking up your knees is an inefficient way to make your potential energy kinetic.

Better to keep one knee slightly bent, use your hamstring to snap the other ankle towards your bum, and lean forward, arms waist high. Like the road runner.

The faster you want to beep beep, the quicker you snap your ankles up to your bum, remembering to keep your knees under your bum while you snap, and your cheeks so relaxed that they jostle like Jell-O on your face, not your bum cheeks, your other cheeks.

Have fun!

October 22, 2009 1:35 pm

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