running-drills

How to run drills

10471 views 3 min to read

3 ‘go-to’ drills to maximise your running performance.

Why bother doing running drills you might ask?

Well there are a number of good reasons that are not only beneficial but critical to you maximising your running ability.

You may have heard people say, “they have good form” or coaches call out ‘focus on your form” whilst a runner is completing a session. So what do they actually mean? Well it should refer to some of the following:
  • Being nice and upright
  • Having a nice even and relaxed arm swing
  • Being nice and light on your feet
Adding these things together makes a runner more efficient. There is less wasted energy, more even control and less contact time with the ground.

If you’re saying, yes ok, so how do I become more like this? This is where running drills come in.

Running drills performed well, focus on certain elements of form in an exaggerated movement. You are extending and focussing on a particular movement more than you would do when your just out running – BUT this over time makes you more aware of things to focus when you are running; and they allow you to extend and increase certain movements that would not be as easily achieved if you had not done some specific training and running drills doing just that.

Our 3 ‘go-to’ drills- performed once or twice a week- are a great start to improve your form.

Skip march

The key to performing the drill correctly is to ensure that runners are hitting the ground under hips and with forefoot whilst with the point of impact being a scraping motion.

Start this drill in a march driving up, out and back. More advanced runners can add a bound into the motion making it more dynamic.

This is a great drill for improving coordination but also teaching your body where it feels good to land – i.e. closer to under the hips and not way out in front of the body.

Skip-march

High knees

The key to performing the drill correctly is to focus on driving the foot down and letting it spring back up off the ground. Maintain good postural form and ensure the core is activated and switched on, you are looking up and forward and that arms are used only as balance.

Again, this over time allows for the legs to lift higher off the ground whilst running.

High-knees
 

Butt kicks

Run into a quick compact running stride with a focus on “kicking the legs/feet up” i.e.: driving the leg up and under the buttocks. Maintain good postural form and ensure the core is activated and switched on, you are looking up and forward and that arms are used only as balance. Again, this over time allows for the legs to lift higher off the ground whilst running.

Butt-kicks
 
Personally I perform these drills and many more at least once a week. It’s a great way to remain aware and continually train your muscles to move in that extended motion.

Perform each drill over about 20-30 metres and then transition into a run working up to 3 plus times for each drill.

Well Beings Keep Running!

For more tips, advice and delicious recipes to fuel your run click here

Vlad Shatrov is one of Australia’s leading Marathoners and the founder of Runlab, a leading provider of group interval training sessions, group functional strength classes and personalized running analysis and programming.

Got a training question for Vlad? Ask him here