As the talented dancer and singer, Shakira sings, "hips don't lie," and if the TRUEFORM RUNNER could sing and dance, it would say the same (it has curves too). There is a noticeable difference in running on the TRUEFORM with the hips in the right position versus the wrong position, which is why the TRUEFORM is a such a powerful tool. Below is a series of pictures and video that compare two different running gaits on the TRUEFORM RUNNER motorless treadmill. One running gait is produced by a "chest-to-bar" position, while the other is produced by a "hips-to-bar" position.
CHEST TO BAR POSITION
HIP TO BAR POSITION
The CHEST TO BAR position is commonly seen in users. If we had to choose one cue to help someone in this position on the TRUEFORM, it would be "drive your hips to the bar." Check out the vertical line on the black wall behind the TRUEFORM. Use that as a frame of reference to help see how these two different gaits are affected by body position.
Whether running on the TRUEFORM or running on the ground, the bio-mechanical forces of running cost energy. One of the natural properties of the human anatomy that can help us not only deal with those forces safely, but moreover, use it as means to propel forward more easily, is elasticity. Watch the video below.
Notice the change in spring when the position shifts to a more column like position? There are two primary tasks during the running cycle; force attenuation and force propulsion. When the human body is stacked upon itself; head over shoulders, shoulders over hips, and hips over ankles, the connective tissue of trunk that surrounds the spine, as well as, the connective tissue of the legs, are optimized in elasticity.
This elastic nature of our body during movement in the upright position is much like that of a coiled spring. We can compress under load and we can recoil when the load is shifted or removed. Of course, we deal with more forces than just compression during movement, but in this instance, the difference in dealing with compression is the often the difference in running feeling "heavy & hard" versus "light & soft".
On the left side pictures, we see a clear bend in the body's kinetic chain and a bend in the coils of the spring. On the right side pictures, we see a kinetic chain aligned to optimally deal with compression and we see a spring that is the right shape to withstand the compressive force without bending. Which spring are you?
Identifying which spring you are is incredibly easy to do on TRUEFORM.
- Begin running
- Can you maintain a column shape for the duration of your run?
- If not, well, let's discuss assessments that will help determine why you cannot, and whether you will be likely to self correct with training or if you need to see a specialist for treatment before training, or alongside of training.
COLUMN SHAPE DURING THE FLIGHT STAGE OF RUNNING
The TRUEFORM serves not only as an easy way to detect your ability to deal with compression, it also serves as a primary tool to help stimulate the neuromuscular adaptations and the strength adaptations necessary to improve your ability to deal with compression and utilize it as an opportunity not a threat.
BENT SHAPE DURING THE FLIGHT STAGE OF RUNNING
If the ability to deal with compression becomes an inability, running will soon be replaced by time on the elliptical, on a bike, in a pool, or the next gravity defying contraption sold to remove the impact forces of running. It does not have to end this way. Your "hips don't lie", they'll either be in position or out of position, and the TRUEFORM is the best hip detector out there to help you...perhaps Shakira could help too.
- If you want a deeper dive into running, get your self a copy of Anatomy For Runners: Unlocking Your Athletic Potential for Health, Speed, and Injury Prevention by Jay Dicharry MS P
- Find your nearest facility with a TRUEFORM
- Go for a run - HIPS TO BAR - nice and easy pace, can you maintain it? - Increase your pace, at what pace do you lose the column/stacked position?
- Take video from the sides often and track your progress throughout different paces.