I kept hearing about this ‘ChiRunning‘ thing and although I was curious – I never googled it. Now I swear I hear or see the word at least once a day so I was excited when Tracy Bigari emailed MRTT about an upcoming ChiRunning workshop she was having in Minneapolis (and in Wisconsin too!). I’ll pass on the workshop info at the bottom of this – but I asked Tracy – what IS ChiRunning??? She was kind enough to write this for us!!! Now I’m REALLY curious…. I wanna workshop near ME!!! Want to come to Atlanta??? hehehe.
Here is what Tracy had to say:
Running… Is there an easier way? Yes!
It’s called ChiRunning.
By Tracy Bigari, Certified ChiRunning Instructor
You know that feeling when you’ve been doing something one way for a while only to realize one day that there is a much easier way? A couple years ago, I had this realization with running, when I discovered ChiRunning.
What is ChiRunning? It is a revolutionary running technique that allows you to run with less effort and less chance of injury! Sounds good right? But how does it work? Well, ChiRunning borrows principles from the martial art of T’aiChi to improve your biomechanics making running easier and simply more fun.
Does that mean by learning to ChiRun you will be making funky hand movements and “ohm”- ing your way down the road? No, but Chi Running will teach you to run the way your body was designed to, the way you were born to, and will help you prevent and recover more quickly from running injuries. As an added benefit, you’ll run more efficiently, faster and with less effort.
Here are the key elements of the technique:
- Alignment: You learn to align your posture so that your body weight is supported by your structure with limited muscular effort. You also focus on getting key body parts pointed in the direction you are headed to eliminate wasted energy.
- Core Enagagement: You learn to engage key core muscles and relax the muscles that runners typically overuse.
- Lean: You learn to allow gravity to become your main source of propusion by leaning forward from the ankles. This transforms your run into a controlled fall rather than relying on the inefficient pushing and pulling effort that upright runners use to move down the road.
- Rearward leg swing: Most runners swing their legs out ahead of their hips, landing on their heels and breaking their forward momentum with each step. In ChiRunning you learn to make your legs swing in the direction of the road moving beneath you and land with a mid-foot strike under or even slightly behind your hips. By cooperating with the force of the road rather than opposing it, you’ll significantly reduce your impact and injury risk.
ChiRunning has helped thousands of runners overcome all sorts of running-related injuries (including plantar fasciitis, shin splints, knee pain, and more). It has also helped new and long- time runners improve their times and enjoyment of the sport. In my case ChiRunning helped me put to rest a chronic IT band injury and take more than an hour off my marathon time!
So what are you waiting for? Run the easier way by learning to ChiRun!
To learn more about ChiRunning, ChiWalking and available classes visit www.bodysensefitness.com and www.chiliving.com. For a list of Tracy’s upcoming ChiRunning / ChiWalking workshops or for inquiries on private instruction visit the workshops page on her website by clicking here!