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Chi Running Techniques

Expert Panel Question???

Question: “Lindsey – I started employing some “Chi running” techniques. Mostly good, but my middle back gets stiff. Your opinion? What to do? thanks”

(ask your questions to the UtahRunning.com Experts here)


To be completely honest, when I first saw your question I had to google “Chi running techniques” to find out what it was!

I’ve never used any of the techniques personally but it definitely sounds like a good thing. With that being said, my opinion with most running related techniques is that if you like it and it helps you then go for it! If it’s causing pain, too much soreness or stiffness (like in your back) then my advice would be maybe to back off a little bit from it if possible and see if that helps, then slowly work your way back to where you are now.

Sometimes when people incorporate new techniques into their running program they’re using muscles that haven’t been developed as much which can cause extra stress and tension to other parts of the body. I’m certainly not saying to just quit doing it, especially if you think it helps and you enjoy doing it, but you possibly may need to take it a little more gradual.

by Lindsey Anderson – Olympian | Professional Athlete

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, March 10th, 2010 at 4:45 pm and is filed under Expert Answers, Strength Training, Training. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

3 responses to “Chi Running Techniques”

  1. Lindsay,
    Back pain when applying running (and ChiRunning) is generally caused by an alignment issue:
    – bending at the waist forces the lower/mid back to support the torso with tension.
    – leading with the waist with shoulders back forces the back/hips/glutes to stabilize the posture. it also crunches the lower back as the hip ‘want’ to slide forward with each step.

    ChiRunning suggests shoulders over hips over ankles to allow the bones/structure to support the body’s weight against gravity. Otherwise you have to use an isometric muscle contractions; which is less efficient and creates resistance to motion.

    Here is a video:
    – ChiRunning Simplified!, Efficient and Injury Free Natural Running Technique


    David Stretanski
    Fitness Coach, ChiRunning®/ChiWalking® Certified Instructor
    Website: http://www.eChiFitness.com
    Blog: http://blog.eChiFitness.com

  2. May I put part of this on my page if I include a reference to this web page?

  3. Stanton,

    We are glad you have found the information useful and are fine if you want to use it on your page. As you mentioned, we would appreciate a reference back to UtahRunning.com’s blog. Thanks.

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