My (Awesome) Running Form

After my eight mile run this morning, I hopped on the treadmill to check my running form for the first time ever.  I’ve read a lot about proper running form and it’s something I keep in mind, but I needed to see what I was actually doing.  Boston Street Running in Baltimore, MD has a sweet treadmill/camera setup (shown in the video) which is fantastic for checking form.  I kept to my usual long distance pace and did my best to replicate how I usually run.  I recorded the playback with my phone so it’s shaky and the quality isn’t great, but it gets the job done.

Overall, I was incredibly happy with what I saw in the video.  Adam was, too.  He went through each of the four screens to comment on specifics:

  • Top right screen:  I’m not overstriding – the ball of my foot lands below my knee rather than in front of it (also seen in bottom left screen).  My ear is in line with my shoulder and my arms are relaxed.
  • Top left screen:  My hips are level, and there is no lateral motion of my knees when I land.
  • Bottom right screen:  I land on the outside of my foot and roll inward.  Adam says this is the natural mechanism for storage of energy and shock absorption (like a spring).
  • Bottom left screen:  (My favorite part:) I have a midfoot strike rather than a heel strike.  In fact, my heel hardly makes any substantial contact with the ground.  Also, my foot is already moving backward when it makes contact with the ground.  In this way it matches the ground speed and keeps my momentum moving forward.

Check out the slow-motion version of the bottom left screen:

I’ve been running in these Skora shoes since February and I think they’re great.  There’s no cushioning, support, or drop (height difference between the heel and toe) so they protect my feet without “getting in the way” of my running.  From hanging around this store, I’ve seen first-hand how shoes can affect a runner’s form.  I highly recommend that anyone interested in running should take a closer look at their form using video, if possible.

To give you an idea of the form I’m trying to imitate, check out the video below from Dr. Mark Cucuzzella.  I’m not interested in barefoot running on the streets of Baltimore, but the biomechanics he describes makes a lot of sense to me.

What do you think?  Do you know what your running form looks like?  If you’re in Baltimore, drop by Boston Street Running to find out!