Fitness Swellness: The Runners Academy at the Saucony FW16 preview

June 23, 2016

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This week, I attended the Saucony FW16 preview, and the brand’s targeting more than just the hardcore runner; broadening their scope to weekend warriors and also those into the athleisure trend. I’ll post some of the gear over on the @irunnation Instagram account soon (I post and blog for iRun on a weekly basis, didja know?). I did receive my very first pair of Saucony runners, these Ride 9, and I’ll be trying them out pronto.

My fave part of the preview: they had the Runner’s Academy on hand and they assessed my gait. I’d heard of the Runner’s Academy before from when I was on the Pace & Mind team last year and some of the team members had gone to improve their running technique. From my past assessments of my gait with other running experts, I’ve only every really learned that I overpronate slightly. With the Runner’s Academy, with a video of my treadmill running in slow motion, they were able to show me how I tend to swing my leg far forward and that my foot lands on the ground more in front of my body, rather than beneath my core (so my legs are more in a pendulum motion). It’s more ideal (in that you can propel yourself forward faster) if your foot strikes the ground underneath you — I’m likely butchering this description, this is all from memory…She traced the trajectory of my foot landing and then swinging back and it creates a sideways teardrop shape, and the more ideal trajectory would have my foot moving in a flat oval shape.

(You can view part of my running assessment video by clicking on the image above btw; I’m in jeans as I was on my way to a Blue Jays game after the Saucony preview.)

To help achieve this gait, they had me run or more like march in the spot and then had me add forward motion to it, so that my body gets the feeling of my feet striking the ground below my core.

I also tend to swing my upper body and shoulders too much, so I’ll be more aware of that and work on strengthening my core. On the plus side, I don’t tend to collapse onto each leg when I land (although I’d say many of my race pics would tell a different story, but the Runner’s Academy expert said that’s likely because I’m exhausted during a race).

Will I be able to adjust my gait and improve my running? Let’s see!


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