Runner’s World published an interesting article giving a review of a new app called Kangarun.
Runner’s World seems to think the app works pretty well. Unfortunately, since I am not an iphone user I haven’t been able to test the app myself, but I would highly recommend anyone with an iphone try out this app!
Why would I have someone try out this app? For one, it is only $.99. We make so many silly purchases in life, why not one for $.99 that can help our running form? Half the battle with teaching running form, is the inefficient runners don’t realize they are running inefficiently and the efficient runners keep trying to correct their stride, making them more inefficient then they started out.
Having an app to give you an overview of what you are doing is a perfect, inexpensive way to begin to increase your running efficiency!
The app works by giving you feedback on vertical movement during your run. If your running is inefficient (or if you are type A like most of the runners out there and want to work to improve the efficiency you already have) reread Good Running Form is a Easy as Listening to Your Own Body and How To Find Dorsiflexion. Then during your next workout see if your efficiency graphs improve! If they don’t improve the first time, focus on another cue. Overtime if you watch the efficiency graphs and keep working to improve different aspects of your form, your running will increase greatly! You will also learn which cues give you the most efficient run. If your efficiency score greatly increases when you focus on landing on your mid foot, you are most likely a natural heel striker. If this cue doesn’t improve your efficiency much, it may mean you already do that well, but you have to work on your forward tilt!
I don’t recommend working on form every day. Obviously we all want to get faster and work to run longer. Therefore, we can’t always focus on form. Sometimes we need to focus on speed and use our natural form. Over time you will begin to see the more efficeint running pattern becomes your natural form! I recommend aiming to use your efficiency app to track progress twice a week:
- When you do your easy recovery runs. (This is a good time to focus on form since you aren’t running hard or for a long time.)
- When you do speed work. (Often when we work to run faster form goes out the window. Don’t necessarily focus on running cues if it destroys your ability to hit your times, but do check the graph afterwards. If you spend some time each run thinking about running form, the largest efficiency gains will come during your speedwork runs!)
Kangarun recommends using a treadmill when using the app to get the best results. Often we naturally vary our speed as we run and a treadmill is a great way to maintain constant speed so the app can correctly calculate our vertical movement per mile.
Have you tried Kangarun? Let me know what you think!