I finally made the time to take a Chi Running workshop. I found a local instructor and did a 1:1 half day workshop. I mentioned before that I’d read the Chi Running book, watched the dvd’s a couple of times and watched all the online videos I could find. I thought I was to the point where a little “professional help” was in order.
I got a lot out of the class. Turns out that I wasn’t applying nearly as much of the Chi Running methodology as I thought I was. Closer than I was a few years ago when I was a definite heel striker, but still pretty far from looking like I was even trying to do Chi Running! The class started with a quick video of me running. I immediately saw a couple of points that weren’t very Chi-ish…I had a pretty serious bend forward at my hips and my feet were landing out in front my body more than I thought they were. My instructor noticed several other things – my cadence was pretty slow, my arm swing was too wild, my shoulders were shrugged, I had a lot of up and down movement, etc.
Over the next 3.5 hours we worked on applying the Chi Running techniques and addressed all of those issues. It was interesting in that we never really focused on any specific item, just going through the class and applying the techniques reduced or eliminated each issues. To be clear, what I mean is that at the end of the class, when everything was fresh in my mind and my instructor was there to correct me, all of the issues seemed to be resolved I know they aren’t all gone for good and that I need to keep working at it, but by the end of the class I really felt like I’d made some progress. We took another video at the end and I could tell a huge difference in my before and after form.
I’m continuing to work on the focus areas and feel like I applied the techniques to my last few runs. It’s a process and I’ll keep working at it and then get a followup session in a couple of months, just to see how much I’ve strayed from what I learned. Hopefully, that followup will be a continuation of the learning process, and not a “do over”!
If you’re interested in a taking a class, you can find one, or an instructor, at the Chi Running site.