Northern Beaches Mums Group
Northern Beaches Mums Group

Running Technique for Kids: 3 easy activities to promote good form ? Part Two

In?Part One?of our series you will recall I talked about various aspects of running technique such as posture, arm carriage, leg movement, and the various stages of the running gait. I also mentioned some things you cannot actually see, such as how economical or efficient someone moves. In other words, how much energy they used for a given speed. The less used for the same speed, the more efficient they are

Another important factor to consider, especially with children, is that they are growing and that may effect their apparent technique. I say ‘apparent’ because they may look awful, or have a bad ‘style’, but may actually move well in some aspects of technique mentioned in part one. So we need to be a little patient whilst your child grows and learns how to use their body properly

Let’s now look at some slightly more advanced, but still very easy, activities to complement the ones shown in part one. These activities can also be done at home if your yard is a reasonable size, or down at the local park for more space.

#at the end of this article you will find?video footage?of these activities

Skipping drill

  • performed over 10-20m, this helps put some spring in the step and aids in coordination
  • use a normal arm carriage ie elbows 90 degrees, letting the arms swing slightly across the body
  • the knee doesn’t need to be lifted too high off the ground, as the main thing to focus on is the impact of the foot on the ground
  • impact should be crisp and sharp

Stability hopping

  • develops stability when landing to limit the body collapsing on impact. the knee, hip, and ankle should bend a little to absorb shock
  • simply hop on one leg at a time for a set number of reps
  • the aim is to land with balance, allow the knee to bend a little, and hold for 1-2 sec.? no need to try to spring really high or far for this drill

Starts in various positions

  • a great one to do with a friend or group for a bit of fun and competition
  • using different start positions such as lying on they tummy, back, side or whatever you like
  • on the whistle, get up and run as fast as you can to a set point, again over 10-20m
  • this drill allows the kids to find their natural ‘start’ position, gets them accelerating quickly, developing strength and power

Check out the video to view the above activities

The number of repetitions and length of the drills will depend on age, experience, and time available. A rule of thumb is 3-4 repetitions, over 10-20m, for 5-10 minutes in total, as well as a short warm up

In the third?and final part of this series we’ll look at how endurance runs such as an?easy trail run?will improve technique.

Article provided by Richard Sarkies