Welcome to our latest newsletter, where we delve into the world of trail running with a focus on perfecting your uphill and downhill form. Today, Coach Sandi Nypaver will be sharing her advice on how to optimize your technique for the best trail running experience running.
It’s a shorter one today, which may be the case for the remainder of the summer as we’re also out and about enjoying some amazing mountain adventures. We hope the advice is just as good as our longer ones. 😎
Uphill Running: Small Steps for Optimal Performance 📈
One of the most common mistakes in uphill trail running is taking big, powerful steps. Sandi emphasizes the importance of taking small steps and maintaining straight alignment, which not only helps with breathing but also prevents quick exhaustion. By keeping your back straight and your neck aligned, you ensure optimal airflow, even on technical trails. Remember, a few feet ahead is a better gaze point than looking down at the ground.
Efficiency on Steep Inclines: The Power Hike 🥾
When tackling extremely steep hills or feeling fatigued during an ultra marathon, I recommend the power hike as an efficient alternative. With this technique, you maintain a forward lean, take quick steps, and push down on your thighs with your hands. This motion allows you to conserve energy and tackle the uphill with confidence.
Downhill Running: Mastering Control and Technique ⚡️
Downhill running can be a rewarding and exhilarating experience, but it’s essential to do it correctly to avoid injuries. I advise landing on your midfoot or lightly on your heel while maintaining a neutral or slightly forward-leaning position. By taking smaller steps, you can easily regain control and reduce the stress on your knees and quads.
What Not to Do: Learning from Mistakes ❌
Leaning far back, landing on heels, and overstriding can lead to unnecessary stress on your body and diminish your overall performance. By analyzing your own form and avoiding these mistakes, you can enhance your downhill running experience.
We hope you found these tips on uphill and downhill trail running form beneficial. By incorporating her advice into your trail running routine, you can improve your performance, increase efficiency, and reduce the risk of injury.
Happy trail running!