Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Running Shoes #6: Running Form

There are quite a number of bloggers (Runblogger, Barefoot University and more) along with shoe companies that say or have said  and I paraphrase "Run in minimalist running shoes and you will improve your running form" . The below video refutes that claim. Chrissy Wellington may one day be called the greatest female triathlete ever. Currently that crown goes to Paula Newby Fraser. I would post videos of Paula that show much of the same thing, but there aren't any. So I post Chrissy. In this video Chrissy is wearing a Brooks Racing flat. Otherwise known as a minimal shoe. In this video you will notice that Chrissy lands on her heel, over-pronates and kicks one leg out fairly dramatically. The shoe isn't exactly causing Chrissy to run on her midfoot and it's not giving her perfect form. But Chrissy has perfect running form. She runs tall, she carries her arms well with very little movement and she runs really strong. Because of these things the heel plant, and over-pronation don't affect her running and she can get away with running in a racing flat. Again, the racing flat isn't causing her to run  like that.

So how did she learn how to run this way? I'll be she had a coach oh wait she has a coach and his name is Dave Scott and he won 6 Ironman World Championships. Let's look at his running form for a second. When you watch this, you'll see short choppy over-pronating steps. But my gosh could this guy run. Again, racing flats, strong body, perfect form in the upper body. Not saying Dave had anything to do with how Chrissy runs but I'll bet  she heard often, "Keep your head up, run tall, keep your arms going forward" and never did she hear "Land on your midfoot". Dave probably also didn't tell Chrissy what shoes to run in. .
My point and it's consistent.
- Run Tall
- Run Strong
- Keep your arms going front to back not side to side.
- Practice this with drills and Strides
- Run often
- Everything else will take care of itself
- If you can get away with running in minimalist shoes do so!

It's a good life....
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