In the diverse running world, debates about the "perfect" technique often lead us down a rabbit hole of conflicting advice. Today, I want to share a perspective rooted in years of coaching and personal experience: there isn't one universally correct running style.
However, through countless sessions with athletes of all levels, I've identified two crucial elements that contribute to a safer, more efficient run, regardless of individual style:
Foot Strike Under the Hips: Ensuring your foot lands directly under your center of gravity minimizes the braking force with each step, reducing the risk of injury and improving efficiency.
High Cadence: Aiming for a cadence of 180 steps per minute or more encourages a lighter, quicker step, decreasing the impact on your joints and facilitating a more natural running rhythm.
When working with runners, my approach isn't to overhaul their unique style but to build upon it, integrating these key factors. This tailored method respects the runner's natural movement while guiding them towards safer, more effective running habits.
Remember, good running form is not in rigidly adhering to one "ideal" but in adapting foundational principles to suit your body's needs. Whether sprinting to the finish line or enjoying a leisurely jog, embracing these elements can lead to a more enjoyable and injury-free running experience.