Raising my knees really did help me run faster – and it can do for you too just as long as you’re not going too far

In a previous post I talked about how raising my knees while running in the second half of the City of Norwich Half Marathon had helped me run faster.
I hadn’t expected it nor did I really understand why.
But it clearly inspired others in the Runnorfolk community to try it too with comments on the Runnorfolk FB page from runners who had also given it a go.
That being the case I decided to find out if it was actually true and so got in touch with running coach and former GB Olympian and Chicago marathon winner Paul Evans, from Active Norfolk.
Paul sent me a very useful link to an article explaining in more detail why it works – which is worth a read.
So, I asked him, it looks like I was right?

Thinking about form

“If you can do that, it does help, but it’s easier said than done,” Paul told me.

“Obviously you should always think about form. If we went out for a run together, I’d be telling you to think about your arms and to look ahead, but as soon as you come under any pressure at all form goes out of the window.”
I knew what he meant – during the City of Norwich half I focused on raising my knees from the halfway point and was able to keep going for a couple of miles, but by mile 11 I was starting to wilt, putting paid to my hopes of getting a negative split.
So, I wondered, had I done more harm than good?
“You run from your hips,” Paul explained. “But the one thing that starts to flag as you run distances is your hip joints. Your cadence starts to shorten and you start to ‘shuffle’ along.”

Read how Paul trained for his marathons

Why raising my knees while running is better in short bursts

So what that means is that raising the knees is good for short bursts and really helps with your form, but if you are running longer distances, may as happened with me simply take too much out of you.
Do you have a tip or a question? Let me know via the Facebook page and I’ll see if I can find an answer for you.


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