My last post explained swing of the arm which is a very important movement in a game of cricket or baseball. So if you like reading this then I would recommend you to read my last post on ‘swing’ to understand the concept of sport specific movement which is no different to movement in general.
This post will cover the swing of leg in running and how a good running form/action can help you gain speed, strength, stability and balance…a must in the game of cricket, baseball, tennis, hockey or any other sport that uses both the upper body and lower equally.
The pictures beautifully explains how entire body gets aligned to perfection if we train individual body parts to seek their ‘maximum’ output in any movement. And who else to reflect that better than the legend – Mr. Usain Bolt.
Mr. Bolt’s running ability is been a study for many experts and I am no exception. For me, its his acceleration, besides a perfect running action of course, that is been a subject of my study.
I stumbled across a video analysis of his running action on social media this morning which prompted me to write this post. Although my pictures are not showing side angle however if you look at the position of my arms, shoulder, hip or knee, you would be able to analyse my running biomechancs. I ain’t no far considering I am not a sprinter 🙂
Ques. Why correct form is important in sports?
Ans: For any muscle/s to give their best output in any action, the muscle fibres must move across the area from origin to insertion/s of a muscle engaging maximum number of motor units. And this happens only when we move with correct biomechanics. Be it swing, jump, landing or running, correct form is essential for maximum muscle output – taking optimal use of existing strength.
Size is irrelevant if your muscle is not able to move to its full potential.
Ques. Can biomechanics be perfected for any movement?
Absolutely. The pictures give you a good example of how close you can get to perfection. It’s a slow process and one must work on all aspects of the body to get a perfect movement. Having said that one doesn’t need to practice the complete movement as is the case with skill practice – batting or bowling. If our training is sport specific then our muscles should be ready to take up any challenge and move effortlessly through the movement.
Example: I didn’t train my upper body for my running movement and yet, my shoulder, arm or head, are in perfect position with legs. This should be our natural movement anyway when we run as per our musculoskeletal arrangement. We do not need to train every muscle for a specific movement.
Keep the foundation strong to attain best fundamental in any movement.
Q. How does all this relate to a cricketer as an example?
Looking at these two pictures: who do you think will catch/field the bowl faster or who is in a better position to jump at the ball?
From the take off to getting upright, we analyse our requirement that suits our sport the best. What running action suits cricket or baseball? Reason out yourself….
Staying low can help a cricketer to reach to the ball faster than staying upright.
Ques: Should we be training for correct running action?
Ans: Why not? If our sport requires us to sprint, run or jump then why should we not work on these aspects?
Biomechanics are key to extract maximum output in a movement and a form can’t be learned or copied overnight. Running is not just about glutes as most people think. It is the synchronization of your entire body as you can see in the picture on the left.
Running, jumping, landing, lunging etc are physical movements that must be attended and improve in training.
Below mentioned are links to my running videos:
Have I been training regularly to keep my running fundamentals intact during these two years? No…I change my training every quarter shuffling between gym, speed, mobility, agility and relaxation.
Note: Our body do not forget the movements.
It is the alignment, balance or usage of our musculoskeletal structure, as a result of training or playing, that change our movement patterns.
So train…and train well for your sport.