Form vs. Running Shoes –Why Minimalism Went Flat, Part Two

by Jim Hixson, CSCS     Minimalism isn’t going away. Too many runners have discovered for the first time what it’s like to run injury-free. They have awakened to the joy of a midfoot strike instead of heels hitting first, something that conventional running shoes with stiff, outsized crash pads...

Original Strength for Runners: Go, Baby, Go

by Sarah Young We were born to run. We were also made to move. Our birthright is movement in all its forms.  As babies, we began laying the building blocks to be runners by doing such seemingly mundane things as lifting and controlling our big heads (which weighed about 1/3 of our baby bodyweight). As...

Danny Dreyer, Chi Running: “Be a Minimalist Walker or Runner, Regardless of the Shoes You Wear”

For tips on how to make 2014 a better running year, let’s turn to my friend Danny Dreyer, the founder of Chi Running. Running shoes have gone from thick to thin to thick and to everything in between since 2006, several years after Danny first started writing and teaching that the keys to healthy,...

“1-2-3 Run” Form Skills

I recently posted a Dr. Mark’s desk piece outlining “5 Tips on How To Improve Your Running Form.” As a followup to that instructional article, here is a short, helpful video as part of the United States Air Force Efficient Running Project. As you focus on form, not speed, here are 3 steps to get you...

Gait 101: Learning to Run More Naturally

by Dr. Phil Maffetone.  Many beginning runners remark about how much they enjoy the new experience. They care little about the nuances regarding form, technique, or proper gait. As long as they are moving, accumulating mileage over a sustained period of time, they feel content and satisfied. But at the...

Dr. Mark’s Video — “The Principles of Natural Running” (over 1/2 Million YouTube Views)

For the past 12 years, I have dissected and modified hundreds of pairs of shoes, taught running form clinics around the country, opened a minimalist store in my home town of Shepherdstown, West Virginia, directed races (from 5K fun runs to marathons), got local children excited about running, and most...

Beware of Footstrike Studies Focusing on Only One Variable

A recent study of less than 40 East African tribesman showed that most  land on their heels while running at a slow pace on a compliant surface (not pavement) and when they sped up most changed their pattern to midfoot landing.  Some in the media then grabbed onto this small sample and somehow arrived at...

Body Asymmetries: How Past Injuries Can Affect a Runner’s Gait

What is meant by “body asymmetry?”  The term is used to describe when both parts of the body don’t line up or appear in sync.  It could be as simple as having a left foot slightly longer or wider than your right one. For runners, body asymmetry can mean a drooping right shoulder or...

15 Misconceptions About Minimalist Shoes and Natural Running

by Jim Hixson. 1. There is no correct way to run. There is no perfect way to hit a forehand in tennis, or to drive a golf ball, or to kick a soccer ball, but the degree of divergence from the accepted norm in each of these activities is relatively small.  When you look at runners who have excellent form,...

New Dr. Mark Video: “Going for a Run”

One of life’s simplest pleasures is going for a run outside. The late Dr. George Sheehan summed it up best: “Out on the roads there is fitness and self-discovery and the persons we were destined to be.” So once in a while let’s forget about footwear, performance standards, and high-tech...

Harvard’s Dan Lieberman’s Short Tutorial Video on ‪How To Run: Do’s and Don’ts

Thank you, Barefoot Professor for this amazingly lucid, totally great video about proper running form. Harvard professor of evolutionary biology Daniel Lieberman gives five simple pointers on how he thinks you can run long distances better and injury-free. First of all, don’t...

Walking vs. Running: Why These Gaits Are Not the Same

by Dr. Phil Maffetone. Walking is associated with first striking the heel, whereas a running gait involves landing farther forward on the foot—a midfoot strike in most cases with more forefoot landing as running speed increases. Making contact with the ground imparts impact forces—the foot literally...

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