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The Pose Running Technique :: An Overview

The Pose running technique is gaining more and more popularity.

Why? Because it is seen as a more natural way of running.

Many of us, when we run, land heels first. However, followers of the Pose running technique claim that this is more stressful for your legs.

Additionally, they say that in order to land on your heels your center of gravity is too far back. You are basically holding your body back in order to land on your heels.

The Pose running technique is based on the notion that running should take less energy. Your body is leaning forward a lot more, and you land on the balls of your feet.

This way, you are basically allowing gravity to do its work. As you lean forward, if you don't want to fall flat on your face, you have to take a step forward. Keep on doing this and you are running, with much less effort than before.

So, the Pose running technique aims to use your body's energy rather than waste it.

On this page I'll talk you through:

  • The Origins of the Pose Running Method

  • Worldwide Acceptance of Pose Running

  • How to do Pose Running

  • Should You Start Pose Running

  • Further Recommended Reading

  • Origins of the Pose Running Method

    Pose Running Technique

    In the seventies Dr. Nicholas S. Romanov was a physical education instructor. As heel landing became the norm in those years, he was looking for a better way of running. A running technique that would help reduce the effects of stress, body energy loss, and physical injury.

    He called this the Pose Method.

    A two-time Olympics Coach, his approach was to enhance an athlete’s performance in all manner of sports. Whether it was for swimming, jumping, running, speed skating, cross-country or skiing, the Pose method proved to be effective.

    In the year 1990, he finally got a chance to go to America. During that period, there were not many people looking into the specifics and the mechanics of running. Dr Romanov claims he is the one who changed that. Solely. I am not sure if that is true.

    Fact is that his method, Chi running, natural running, barefoot running, whatever you may call it, has become more popular ever since and had a real breakthrough after the book Born to Run became a best-seller.

    Worldwide Acceptance of the Pose Method

    Now, it can be proven that this type of running, the Pose running technique, reduces knee impact by about 50 percent. And because many athletes suffer from knee injuries sooner or later, more and more people turn to this type of running.

    It has been used by Olympics National teams from many different countries like the USA, Russia and the UK.

    And whatever distance you run, whether it is a 100m sprint or a marathon, the physics behind it all remain the same. Find a way of using gravity as leverage to cause your body to keep moving forward over any distance.

    In the end, people will go with the technique that makes them go faster. That's why a growing number of teams use Pose running simply because of this fact.

    How to Do Pose Running...

    Pose Running Technique

    The Pose running technique is not just about landing on the ball of your foot. Although that is an important part. But landing on the ball of your foot is just the result of what you are trying to do: use gravity.

    Here are some of the basics of this running technique: stand straight in the most natural way for you and let your body fall forward a little as you start to run.

    As you fall forward, you put your foot down. Ground contact will naturally begin with the balls of your feet. Avoid landing on your toes. The ball of your foot is the strongest part of the bottom of your feet, so land on the ball.

    Your feet should be on the ground for only a brief time and, as much as possible, your heels must not touch the ground.

    Never bounce off the toes, but rather, when your weight is on the balls of the feet, raise your foot from the ankle and make sure your knees are bent at all times. The length of your strides must be short and your thighs and knees must be relaxed and closed together.

    You should try to not focus on landing. Instead focus on pulling the foot from the ground. Gravity is your friend, let it influence where your feet can land.

    Do not force yourself to pull forward, let yourself fall as you balance yourself with speed. Your ankles, hips, and shoulders must always be vertically aligned.

    Sounds tricky doesn't it?
    I guess it is pretty tough to describe this properly. It becomes easier when you get the pictures + video with it that the Pose guys provide.

    I'll provide you with a few resources on how to practice this at the bottom of this page.

    However, first I want to get into the important question: Should you start Pose Running?

    Should You Start Pose Running?

    So, should you start Pose running? Well, ask Dr Romanov and he'll tell you to do it for sure... :)

    I have got the following ideas about this:

    It's always good to work on your running technique. Many of us only do 162-166 strides per minute, whereas professional athletes do about 180 strides per minute.

    That's a big difference. Would you think you'd go faster if you'd be able to do 14-18 steps extra every minute. You bet!

    So, for basically everyone it makes sense to work on stride rate and how efficiently you run.

    Now, when your current running is plagued by injury after injury, then I would recommend working on this change as a matter of priority. Get the books, the videos, practice, practice, practice. Because you don't have much to lose.

    However, when you are currently running well, no injuries, no problems, then I'd advocate a more conservative approach. Yes, I still think the Pose running technique is a good idea for you. But you can afford to take a less radical approach. Work on your running technique regularly, but as part of your normal running. I have provided some links below.

    Further Recommended Reading

    Pose Running Technique Learning Materials - There is quite some more information available about the Pose running technique. You may want to get some materials to familiarize yourself further with this running method.

    A video or a book with exercises will definitely help. It takes time to learn the method as you have years and years of running to "un-learn".

    Running Cadence - Work on your stride rate with the exercises described on the running cadence page.

    Running Technique - General explanation about running technique. Discusses what good running technique is.

    Running Strides - A simple way to improve running economy is doing strides. Learn how and why on this page.

    The Pose running technique is definitely an interesting way of running.

    Although there are quite a few known individual successes, thus far the Pose method has not been widely adopted by the running community.

    We are all experiments of one and you may want to experiment with this method to see if it helps you.

    Either way, as said above, working on your running technique is always a good idea, so follow the links above for more information.

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