Here at Jelly Baby Towers, we’re suckers for all manner of running Apps. So how excited were we to find out that New Balance were offering a free App to help all of us plodders learn about Good Form Running? Well, very, is how.
According to the media pack blurbage, the new App ‘helps runners to reduce the chances of injury by improving four key elements of their running style – Posture, Midfoot strike, Lean and Cadence.’
Crikey. Obviously, I knew immediately what three of those four elements meant. But what the heck is Cadence? (Though I’ve always thought that it was a lovely name for a girl. You know, the kind of thing that can pretty up just about any surname…)
However, as soon as I got into the Good Form Running App, the meaning and importance of all of these things was made clear, as you can see from the screen grab. The app also includes four short video lessons, and a means with which to record and evaluate the reduced joint and muscle pain you achieve by using the techniques it describes.
But does the Good Form Running app work?
Well, as the video lessons make clear, improving your running form and performance isn’t ever going to happen overnight. The bad habits of many years of letting your hands cross over, landing on your heels or over-reaching with your stride can’t be easily broken.
However, as a lifetime over-strider, I’ve been playing with the notion of a shorter stride and faster cadence this week; and while I can’t say that I’ve enjoyed the experience, I definitely feel that I’m putting less stress on my knees and ankles as a result, so I’m probably going to persevere with the App for a while. After all, any free App that can help to improve your pace and efficiency while reducing the after-effects and chances of injury has to be a good thing. So if you’re an iPhone user, there’s absolutely no reason not to hie you over to the Apple App Store while the going’s good.
In the meantime, I’ll be trying to sell New Balance on the idea of a more interactive App, which actually tells you what you’re doing wrong while you’re running. Perhaps with Windsor Davies from ‘It Ain’t Half Hot Mum’ providing the voiceover: “Shoulders back, lovely boy. Watch that cadence now. One-two, one-two…”
Who knows, they might just go for it. In the meantime, all that remains is for me to hand the New Balance Good Form Running App a resounding 5 Jelly Baby Rating, for sparing my knees from their usual pounding, and this blog’s loyal readership from any more wingeing about injuries than is strictly necessary.