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I have trained with Keith in Sean Williams' Squad for the past few years. He is an inspiration to all of us and a great mentor to the junior runners. I have had a one on one run with Keith around the hills of Coogee and in that short time he was able to pass on some very worthwhile techniques to improve my hill running and cadence!!!
One-to-one coaching is perhaps the best way to identify ways you can improve your running technique.
Whatever your current running ability, better technique will help you run smoother and with less effort. That means you can run further/faster with the same effort, and it will also decrease the possibility of you getting a running injury.
Although my main aim with most clients is to improve technique I do of course pass on knowledge and ideas on all aspects of running - a collection from my many years of sports teaching, and training with some of Australia's best athletes plus racing at State, National and International competitions.
I introduce clients to barefoot running when possible as it encourages good technique - it has helped me to stay strong and largely injury free. I encourage a gradual transition towards barefoot training and increased use of minimalist shoes where this can be done safely. See more on barefoot running here. Interesting article in "Podiatary Today".
"How one runs probably is more important than what is on one’s feet, but what is on one’s feet may affect how one runs." Dr. Daniel Lieberman
I also point my clients towards running clubs, running groups, and training squads depending on their needs and preferences. It is much easier training with a group of the right level - and when you outclass them you can always move up to a faster group!
Technique changes must be introduced gradually to avoid injury and you must be prepared to reduce the length and intensity of your runs and gradually build up while you build up strength in new areas. If you are on a training program or are preparing for a race then you will need to forgo your short-term goals in favour of the long-term benefits of running more efficiently.
I came from a Downhill skiing background and spent 25 years teaching, racing and running my own ski school in Scotland. I started running in 1985 and ran on and off until coming to Sydney in 2000 at the age of 45 with a 10k PB of 36:36 achieved many years before. After 3 years gradually improving from my first Australian 10Km race time of 43min to a PB close to 36 minutes I hit a brick wall and sought help from a coach in 2003.
Since then, with the considerable help and the fantastic support of my coach Sean Williams, consultation with a dietician and analysis from a bio-mechanic, I have continually improved my times with 35 State age-group records and 15 Australian age-group records (some more than once), and 5 World age-group records.
Top 50 City to Surf (2009 and 2012 [age 57])
Double gold in the World Masters Games 2009
(1500m and 5000m)
Quadruple gold in the World Masters Athletics Games 2011 at Sacramento
[8km XC, 5000m, 1500m (WR), Marathon (2:43:07)].
My 10K time is now down to 31:51.86 (track - 2011).
3000m M55 World Record Video (At Sydney Olympic Park, NSW State 3000m 2010)
1500m M55 World Record Video (At World Masters Athletics Games, Sacramento 2011)
The changing foot action is due to the foot connecting with the moving ground. Note where the foot lands in relation to the hips and head, and the way the hips rise immediately after the foot lands.
Most of the force applied by the runner is to raise the hips UP and the foot never lands in front of the body.
There is slightly more forward tilt than normal as the treadmill is inclined a few degrees
Also more forward tilt during the acceleration, less during the deceleration