While I was recovering from my knee injury last year, I did some research on the net and stumbled upon Chi Running. This book was wrote by Danny Dreyer who first created Chi Walking. It is an interesting concept by incorporating the movement and gracefulness of tai chin into running. It claims that you'll be able to run injury-free, effortless and well within your old age. I was looking for some way to get back to running in the quickest way possible and hopefully wouldn't get injured again. After thorough research on the subject and reading encouraging reviews, I decided to purchase it from MPH at RM65.90.
I would recommend this to anyone be it beginners or elite runners. For beginners, it is easier for you to incorporate the techniques into your running as you are just starting out. So it is good for you to start with the right technique. For more seasoned runners, it might be a bit more difficult as you are so used to your own style of running. But gradual change is not impossible and you would be inclined to try it if it could improve your timing or make you less injury-prone.
Personally I've applied some of the techniques to my running with good effects. I liked the way it teaches us to arch our body to center the gravity and achieve a greater balance. Also the way it teaches me to calculate and increase my strides to shift to a mid-foot strike instead of a heel-strike. These are all quite technical and would take months if not years to change. For one, you need to be patient and always keep reminding yourself to practise the new technique in order to make it a habit. After all practise makes perfect!
Here's how the book roughly pans out:
-Chapter 1: compares power running to ChiRunning
-Chapter 2: goes into the 5 principles upon which TaiChi and ChiRunning are based
-Chapter 3: gets into the "inner" skills of ChiRunning
As you can see, the first 3 chapters lay out the philosopical foundation- that's so when you get to the specific techniques, they make sense.
Chaper 4: learn about the ChiRunning "focuses"- which are the specific physical and mental methods used to run more efficiently.
Chapters 5-9: covers program development, peak performance training and diet. Note: Chapter 7 also covers some info on common injuries such as muscle cramps, plantar fasciitis (also rec. The 5-Minute Plantar Fasciitis Solution for more info on this), heel cord problems.
Chapter 10: how to incorporate the ChiRunning principles into your everyday life
As you can tell, ChiRunning, with its mind-body approach, is far from your typical book on running- and shouldn't be missed by any serious runner.
Who can benefit from Chi Running?
Chi Running has helped many people, from beginners to cross country runners to triathletes. Whether you are just beginning a running program or training for a marathon, race, or triathlon, the Chi Running approach is one that builds a healthy body, instead of breaking it down from misuse or overuse.
What is the focus of Chi Running?
Chi Running helps reduce or eliminate injury and pain such as: knee pain, hip pain, IT Band Syndrome (ITB), hamstring pulls, Achilles tendonitis, plantar fasciitis, soreness and fatigue. Conditioning your mind is just as important as conditioning your body. Let Chi Running help you focus your mind, lift your spirit and open up your flow of chi.
My book is in available for borrowing and is currently in distribution to friends right now. If you are from Penang, you could drop me a note and we could arrange meeting place. If you're from elsewhere, you could get it from your nearest bookstore or online from Amazon.