Running drills are specific exercises designed to improve running form, speed, and efficiency. They target various aspects of running technique, such as stride length, cadence, and muscle coordination. Some common running drills include high knees, butt kicks, A-skips, B-skips, and side-to-side skips.
These drills help runners develop better muscle memory, strengthen key running muscles, and improve cardiovascular conditioning. They are typically performed after a warm-up and can be incorporated into a runner's training program to enhance overall performance and reduce the risk of injury.
WHY RUNNING DRILLS ARE IMPORTANT
- Boost Running Efficiency: They teach proper form and technique, leading to improved running economy.
- Reduce Injury Risk: Many injuries stem from poor form. Drills help correct this, lowering the chance of getting hurt.
- Enhance Overall Performance: Improved form and technique translate to better running performance.
TYPES OF RUNNING DRILLS
- Dynamic Warm-Up Drills: These are pre-run exercises like high knees, leg swings, and butt kicks, designed to warm up the body and activate key muscles.
- Stride and Cadence Drills: Done during runs to enhance stride length and turnover rate. Examples include high-frequency strides and ladder drills.
- Plyometric Drills: Focus on increasing leg power, leading to faster speeds and higher jumps. Squat jumps and bounds are common examples.
- Hill Training Drills: Improve form and build strength for uphill and downhill running. Includes hill sprints and stair repeats.
INCORPORATING RUNNING DRILLS
- Include them in your training one or two times a week, ideally after warming up or at the start of a run.
- They can be done on various terrains but start with lower intensity and build up over time.
In summary, running drills are a key component of a runner's training routine, enhancing form, speed, and endurance, and reducing injury risks. Both beginner and experienced runners can benefit from incorporating these drills into their regular training.
RUNNING DRILLS FAQs
The frequency of running drills depends on the individual's training goals and experience level. As a general rule, it is recommended to perform running drills once or twice a week to enhance the long-term effects of doing them consistently. However, it is important to note that running drills should not be done every day, as they can cause fatigue and increase the risk of injury. It is also important to perform running drills after a proper warm-up, and on a soft surface such as a rubberized track, a flat dirt trail, or a grassy field. Each drill should be done for 10 to 20 meters, and the sequence should be repeated at least once. If time permits, the sequence can be repeated 2 to 3 times. Incorporating one to two drill sessions into a running program each week can help improve running form, speed, and efficiency.