Running at different speeds can be a lot of fun - and it can be a temptation and a path leading to running injuries. A recent experience in my running training demonstrated this phenomenon and has reminded me of the importance one of the core principles in the Chi Runing model, that of Gradual Progress, that I'd like to share today.
Â For Spring Break our family traveled to the San Francisco Bay Area where ChiRunning was conceived and launched. I thoroughly enjoyed seeing many of our old friends and doing a little sightseeing, which for me means trail running in the Marin Headlands, home to arguably some of the most beautiful trail runs in the world. [...]
One of the main things I see inefficient runners do, is swing their legs in a low, pendular swing. If your foot swings forward as it meets the oncoming road, that braking motion creates an impact felt in your knees, hips and lower back. This braking motion not only creates more impact to your body, it makes your muscles work harder than is necessary. In the Chi Running method, the most efficient leg swing is one in which your foot swings rearward the instant it hits the ground. In the best case scenario, it's actually moving rearward at the same speed as the oncoming road. This creates the least amount of braking and horizontal impact at the moment of touchdown.
So, how do you keep from swinging into the road and get your foot to come straight down onto the road?