Gliding Forward with the Help of a Metronome

February 14th, 2011

Gliding Forward with the Help of a Metronome

You may not remember me from your workshop in Austin. I was the older woman who struggled behind everyone else and spent much of the afternoon weeping. I had a terrible weakness in one knee and could not keep up, and I'm sure you felt like the workshop was a waste of time for me.

But I went home and began to practice with the metronome, trying to get the cadence and forgetting about everything else. I could only do it at first for about 30 seconds without becoming terribly winded. I had to learn to radically shorten my stride. But when I got it, I began gliding along in this strange, easy motion. I described it to my sister as like a quick step in a slow dance. I felt as though I was moving really casually, without any effort. It seemed hardly like running, but it felt like what I had seen Danny doing.

I'm 62 and hate to think that my running days are behind me, as slow as I am. So you can imagine my shock to discover that in this effortless gliding forward I had instantly dropped 4 minutes from my time for the mile. It is stunning to me. I really think the metronome forces you to fall into the correct form, because there is simply no time to get out of it.

One other thing I might mention. Danny had said that the metronome setting depends on your height: 180 bpm for shorter people, 170 bpm for taller ones. I discovered that the right cadence for me is actually 178, because I have proportionately longer legs for my height. Now I love, love, love the metronome: I am using the Tempo app on the iPhone with earphones and turning the volume down to the level of a heartbeat.

Thank you for your wonderful teaching, Danny. I got so much out of the workshop, despite my struggles.

Peg S.
Austin, Texas

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