Mom’s Intro to Dr. Romanov’s POSE Method of Running
Running is one of the most neglected and misunderstood forms of fitness with very little attention paid to running technique. Every form of fitness has a standard or points of performance to follow; running well is just as important as proper stabilization in a deadlift, executing with impeccable detail in the olympic lifts, and throwing a baseball utilizing the proper body mechanics. My point is this: we need a standard for better running technique.
The human foot was not designed to heel strike in a running gait. Our feet were designed with enough padding on the ball of the foot for our ancestors to get around. In fact, our ancestors have been running for millions of years, predominantly in bare feet. In today’s society, we’ve been lead to believe that running on our heels is okay because we’ve added cushion to the heels of our sneakers; this could not be further from the truth.
Pain with Running
Brian Mackenzie – an author, running expert, creator of Power Speed Endurance and the CrossFit Endurance Certification course – explains why we don’t want to run on the heels of our feet: “Take off your shoes and jump up and down barefoot on your heels. Do it! I dare you! Wait, no don’t, you didn’t sign a waiver! What you should do instead is to jump from and land on the balls of your feet as if you are jumping rope. Then give it a whirl with those heels, or even from “mid-foot.” Doesn’t work so well, huh?” Through some humor, Mackenzie stresses that not only is jumping or running from our heels inefficient, but it is also painful. So how do we fix the dreaded heel strike and create a new standard of running? The answer is the POSE Method of Running.
The POSE Method of Running was discovered in the 1970’s by Russian Sports Scientist and two-time Olympic coach, Dr. Nicholas Romanov. Dr. Romanov officially called the running technique, “POSE” due to the positions – or poses – our bodies move through during the running cycle. Among the many advantages of doing this style of running, one of the greatest is how it reduces stress on the knees (because we all know a runner or two who suffers from knee issues).
According to a 2004 study published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, POSE running reduced stress on the knees in their subjects by 53%. Yes, I said 53%! It has also been found to both diminish and prevent overuse injuries, while improving athletic performance. Due to the many advantages, “POSE” has been used by the U.S., Great Britain, Jamaican, Mexican and Russian Olympic track & field and triathlon teams and is now widely accepted throughout numerous sports and forms of fitness. The Pose Method of Running actually consists of three elements: The Pose, the Fall, and the Pull. According to Dr. Romanov, the three elements “accept gravity as the primary force for forward movement instead of muscular effort. To achieve the optimum running technique, the key is to make the greatest possible use of terrestrial gravity.” Essentially, Dr. Romanov’s studies point out that gravity is not only the leading force in running, but that it plays a key role in all efficient human movement.
Dr. Romanov’s POSE Method of Running is not only a standard of measurement in running, but it can also be utilized in the motherhood transition. In BIRTHFIT, we choose methodologies based on their evidence in the real world, such as minimal injuries or optimal performance markers. As moms begin their motherhood transition, they’ll discover that their bodies go through many physiological changes. Sometimes these changes are reflected in mom’s running. Despite the many changes, it’s important that mom’s foot strike remain directly under her center of mass by utilizing the POSE Method of Running. By working with gravity, mom’s risk of injury is greatly reduced and she is able to breathe and recover more efficiently.
Running in Pregnancy or Postpartum
The POSE Method of Running is important for mothers (or any runners) because it helps prevent injuries by working with gravity as opposed to fighting against it. Like learning to swim, performing a squat, or shooting a basketball, there are certain standards we should pay attention to; running is no exception. Standards not only give us direction, but they also let us know if our fitness is actually working and if we should stop doing the movement altogether. Now that we have a standard, it’s important that we have standard bearers: that standard bearer is YOU!
(If you’re looking for some individual support in running, set up a consult with me (Nast)!)
BIRTHFIT NJ Regional Directorwww.birthfitnj.com
Book: Power Speed Endurance by Brian Mackenzie
Article: An Introduction to the Pose Running Method by TJ Murphy