THE BLOG
10/29/2013 02:29 pm ET Updated Jan 23, 2014

Running Form: Distilled (Part 4)

Running Form: Distilled

And there you have it, the essence of running in three easy pieces -- Pose, Fall, Pull. But, if it's so easy, why do most runners suffer injuries, run slowly, and consider a marathon a long run?

Hardwired, But Short Circuited

Where adults have to work at it, most young kids do all this naturally. And why wouldn't they? Their primal grace, their inherent physical fluencies, still intact, engender action aligned with intent. Ah, the purity of movement.

Kid Running Pose

Kid, Running Pose

But, since childhood, most of us have been unwittingly rewiring themselves to forget the sensations and coordinations that permit us to run fluidly and easily. Why? Again, wearing shoes disconnects us from any tactile appreciation of terrain, balance and motion. Also, by thinking of running in terms of muscles' efforts, we errantly reverse the current between brain action and bodily effect. That is, by our typical disregard for the primacy of gravity in creating human structure and locomotion, we impede our conscious reacquaintance with natural motion. This, all bad.

And Now?

The good news is that now, by looking at the schematic of running as simply a linking together of one pose to the next, you are able to again switch-on your psycho-physiology and run safely and effectively. Pose, Fall, Pull -- nothing more, nothing less.

It could be that your desired fitness menu includes some combination of running farther, running faster, and running free of injury. If so, by learning to land in the running Pose you can avoid the injurious impact transient that is created by active heel strike and mid foot landings. By utilizing greater ranges of fall, you can capitalize on the same gravitational acceleration that the very fastest runners are using. And, rather than arbitrarily exercising muscles, by specifically training to consistently pull the support foot from the ground on time you will develop the metabolic and neural endurance -- and confidence -- that can extend your running skill even out to ultra distances. Finally, by relearning how to work with instead of against physical laws, you can now start running "naturally."

Thus, we come full circle. Pose Method distills running into its essential elements (Pose, Fall, Pull) which best coordinate natural forces, so we can run-- farther, faster, and free from injury.

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