Checking my running form

Published by Ronald on Friday, 19 Aug 2011 11:23 EDT

A few days ago, I decided that I wanted to work on my running form after reading about this blog post from Jason Robillard. I know that it’s important for minimal and barefoot running to have a proper running form to avoid blisters or injury. I haven’t been injured yet, but I did get some blisters with the Invisible Shoes which is to be expected when you start. I have two races coming up which I plan to run in minimal shoes (most likely the VIVOBAREFOOT Neo) and I thought this would be a good time to check out my running form.

My video editing skills are very minimal, but I managed to put a video together which turned out to be quite interesting for me. When I made this video, I ran the way I always run which means I didn’t watch my form at all. This is how I have been running for the past few months and I do think I can spot a few issues, which I’ll get into later.

The pace in this video is around 10 to 12 kmph or around 6-8 mph which is not sprinting but my fast pace for longer runs.

Initially, I only planned to video myself in the Mizuno Wave Universe 4 and the VIVOBAREFOOT Neo (which I will review soon) since those are currently my regular running shoes and I won’t be changing for a while because of the two races I have coming up. However, I thought it would be fun to see how I run in my very first running shoes the Asics AHAR? (it says AHAR on the sole) and my old Adizero Rocket which I still use for some recovery/LSD runs. Of course, then my curiosity piqued and I had to test barefoot and the Invisible Shoes as well.

Asics vs Adizero

Asics vs Adidas Adizero Rockets

While I don’t really focus on getting a proper running form, I did read the basics like leaning forward and landing your foot beneath your center point of gravity. I did try to watch my running form when I first got the Adidas Adizero Rockets. Since then I have just been running and haven’t really thought about my running form at all, which might not have been that smart.

Looking at the video and the above stills, you can see that I don’t actually land on my forefoot (especially with the Asics). I seem to land mostly on my heels with the Asics, while with the Adidas I seem to land on my midfoot and still on my heel ever so slightly. This explains why it hurt a bit when I first started running in the VIVOBAREFOOT Neo.

Mizuno vs Neo

VIVOBAREFOOT Neo & Mizuno Wave Universe 4

You can see very clearly how soft and squishy the sole of the Mizuno Wave Universe 4 is, every time I land on it you see the sole compressing which explains why it has quite a bit of (albeit quite indirect) ground feel.  The way I run in the Wave Universe 4 and the Neo seems quite Identical and it appears that I overstride slightly with both of them and that I'm landing in front of my center of gravity which isn’t right.

IS vs barefoot

Invisible shoes and barefoot

It’s fun to see that the Invisible Shoe made no difference at all in the way I run as compared to barefoot. You can see in the video it seems pretty much identical. I land better or more directly under my center of gravity but again I don’t seem to be explicitly landing on my forefoot but more on my midfoot. I seem to bounce a bit, meaning my cadence is probably slightly too low but this doesn’t happen with the Neo or Mizuno. I probably ran a bit too careful barefoot resulting in it being too slow since this was the first time that I ran truly barefoot outside.

I think I will read some more on what running form someone should have and try to focus on that in the next few weeks and video myself again to see if I have improved. I wanted to ask everyone to feel free to criticize anything and everything about my running form or any other mistakes you can see that I should watch for.

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