Simple guide to Running and Walking Cues

September 24, 2015

Cues can profoundly affect the way we move or try and improve our running and mechanics. Cues that start out as effective and positive can over time become a negative. In general we should try choose cues that have little or no downside and that will also stay relevant for a long period of time.

Running and walking cues are not the same.

Attached is a simple guideline of walking and running cues that are safe and will stand the test of time.

Walking cues

  • Long spine, lean gently forward until toes relax onto ground.
  • Leave your heel on the ground until your body passes over hip.
  • Leave your heel on the ground until you feel a gentle stretch in hip.
  • Let your arms swing gently at your sides.
  • Feet should adapt and conform to the ground.

    The aim of walking is to integrate your surroundings with your senses, sight, smell, sound and touch. You should be relaxed and aware of your surroundings. It is a great way to integrate thought and relax the nervous system.

    Walking is low impact and so the best time to wear flexible shoes with little or no cushioning to strengthen feet and make your feet and hips supple and strong or walk barefoot if the terrain is safe to do so.

    Walking Don’ts
  • Don’t stride out or walk fast

    Running Cues
  • Long spine, gentle forward lean until toes relax onto ground but be centered
  • Rule no 1: Always Control center of mass and be centered.
  • Look Ahead
  • Stay connected to the ground until you feel your stance leg push you forward “Let your foot drive your hip forward”
  • Use your glutes to drive the world beneath you as if you were spinning the globe
  • Allow your shoulders to counter rotate freely
  • Drive your hips into extension
  • Run off the front of your foot, your forefoot should feel like a hinge.
  • Relax your foot off the ground (imagine pulling your foot out of a gumboot behind you, you have to relax the ankle and soften the foot)
  • Relax and feel connected and efficient

    Mistakes made at the core or in controlling your center of mass cannot be corrected at the periphery, so always control center of mass and generate power and movement from the hips. Supple and adaptable feet require no thought in order to land and adapt to the ground.
    Relaxing the foot as it leaves the ground will in turn relax the foot striking the ground and allow it to be supple and adaptive.
    Relaxing the feet will soften the hips and allow you to access them as springs.

    Running Don’ts
  • Do not increase cadence or decrease ground contact time by prematurely lifting feet off the ground
  • Don’t lean
  • Don’t pull back or pull up
  • Do not consciously use the hamstrings for propulsion or force production

Lawrence van Lingen

I have helped thousands of elite and desperate people overcome career ending or insurmountable injuries and helped many achieve significant breakthrough in performance. Learn how to run and move better and run faster with less injury.The channel has simple running fundamentals and then more advanced running concepts.Start with Rule no 1. of running "Control your Center of Mass" and start with a simple daily flexibility routine. I suggest you start with doing the "penguins".Ask if you need help and let me help you run and move your best.

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