Beaverton, Tualatin Medical Clinics                    

Copyright, © 2013-2015. Run2bwell & Hans Kroese.   All rights reserved.


Contact for more info: HANS KROESE, P.T. BSED, MOMT, SPM    -  Telephone 503 927 1012   -    EMAIL:

                                                                   The Flat Run Alternative

There never seems to be a shortage of really unique ways people like to run. Your natural running style is determined by a wide range of factors such as strength, morphology, and so on.  The way you run may also be linked to a certain species of animal such a Pigeon (runners who's toes point inward), Hippos (stompers who's feet hit the ground hard with every impact) or the Ostrich (running with knees extended and over striding). 

The running style I see most often displayed in shod runners is actually the one related to the yoyo. That is the one where you see the head bobbing up and down like a Kangaroo. Nothing saddens me more to know that ultimately there will be a price to pay for some of these unusual running styles. 

Each year thousands of runners get injured. The main characteristic of a faulty running style is the inability to land with minimal impact. Reduction of ground reaction forces should be at the top of our list of priorities when it comes to increasing running volume (miles per week), otherwise all this impact will destroy joint tissue.

A quick and easy way to fix this bouncing of the head problem is to go out for your longest run possible. No need to go quite the ultra-marathon distance but go as far you can barely making it back. Each step you take toward the end of your run should be your last but you keep going.

Next, take off whatever you are wearing (shoes) and run another block or two.  While I don't recommend doing this, unless you have done minimalist running before (Vibrams, Merrills, Vivobarefoot, etc ), you may want to skip this step or risk bruising your feet.  

Elite runners don't bounce. Their landing is soft and impact is low. The result is a seemingly effortless and efficient running syle. Does this way of running feel natural? To them it certainly does, but it takes many years to reach that point. What is natural to you may change over time especially on your way home from your really long barefoot run. You will lack energy and have no power to bounce up and down. The yoyo effect will disappear resulting in an efficient and smooth running style. 

Try to remember this "new" running syle. Practice running this way on your moderately long runs or recovery runs. The flat run actually looks more like a shuffle and it minimally impacts the feet, ankles, knees, and hips. The key is to practice this as an alternate style to your normal run at least once a week. Over time your running technique will look less like a yoyo or Kangaroo but more like a slow running Cheetah.

Tualatin: Mon-Thur, 7 AM - 5 PM

19260 SW 65th Ave, Suite 285 
Tualatin OR 97062

Telephone: 503 927 1012