Chirunning workshop Leeds June 6th



  • Ooo! A proper reply lol! I haven't booked yet, no! x
  • Even if you don't totally buy in to any specific running technique, you will almost certainly benefit from having someone watch you run and you then watch it back too. 

    HJ, I have no interest in your race times, I asked about your coaching experience.

  • Good for you Yorkslass, hope the course works for you, a coach there in person helps loads as there can be a huge gap between what you think you do & what you actually do. 

     Am a wannabe Poser myself, was a bit nervous before spending money for my first pose coaching, now can see its one of the best things I've ever done.

    There is not one single scientific paper putting forward a benefit of cushioned trainers, so the naysayers must have good technique as theyre all running in cheap plimsols and not wasting money on something without any solid proof image 

  • @Farnie - you said this:

    *stands back to listen to HJ's coaching/running credentials*

    So, you asked for "coaching or running credentials", and I gave them.  Keep up, especially with your own posts.

  • Not one single scientific paper, eh?  How about Iain Hunter, Ph.D's paper "Ground reaction force differences between running shoes, racing flats, and distance spikes in runners", that was published in Journal of Sports Science and Medicine earlier this year?  When asked "So the basic finding is that training shoes DO reduce forces for rear foot strikers, right?" by some running publication (Runners' World) his response was, "That is correct.".
  • Well, yeah, comparing one bad heel strike with another. But compare it with a fullfoot ot forefoot strike pattern and I think the findings show these have less impact than heel strike (not to mention the braking effect caused by heel strike).

    Generally, I think a 'one size fits all' is flawed and 'if it aint broke...' holds true, but to ignore your technique and assume what feels right naturally must be the best way is stupid.

  • Hywel Jenkins wrote (see

    Not one single scientific paper, eh?  How about Iain Hunter, Ph.D's paper "Ground reaction force differences between running shoes, racing flats, and distance spikes in runners", that was published in Journal of Sports Science and Medicine earlier this year?  When asked "So the basic finding is that training shoes DO reduce forces for rear foot strikers, right?" by some running publication (Runners' World) his response was, "That is correct.".

    Well obviously if you're running with bad form and heel-striking then a great big cushion on your heel is going to reduce the impact force, but that's beside the point - the shoes allow and encourage bad form. Running with good form as taught by Chirunning and others uses a fore/mid-foot strike which has lower impact forces than any heel-strike could hope to have.

     ^Guess dibbers beat me to it image

  • Hywel Jenkins wrote (see)
    .  No injuries, apart from sore nipples and some mild chafing caused by my Camelback.
    Hywel Jenkins wrote (see)

    @Farnie - "stands back to listen to HJ's coaching/running credentials"  Brilliant!  What's that got to do with it?  All I've said that the whole Chi Running things is based on grounds short of evidence - anyone, runner or not, with a scientific mind could come to the same conclusion: show the evidence and I'll believe it.

    My running credentials are probably better than yours.  I started running 30 years ago, then did nothing between leaving school and three years ago, when I did my first marathon in 3h46 (two years ago, when I was 38) - while carrying my own water around the hilly Herefordshire country side.  1m PB is 5'27.  5km is 18'1. 10km is 36'54.  No injuries, apart from sore nipples and some mild chafing caused by my Camelback.

    Hywel Jenkins wrote (see)

     Though baffled by whatever's causing the pain - she bent me, stretched me, and folded me in all indescribable shapes, but couldn't trigger any pain response at all - she sent me a way with some exercises to stretch out the problem area.

    After five days I'm already back running, though just on a treadmill at the moment, and don't get anywhere near as much discomfort as I was last week.  I appreciate that you could put that down to my body recovering anyway.

    I would try keeping up with your own maybe?
  • So let me get this right, Yorkslass comes on here to ask if anyone else is interested in attending a running technique coaching session and she gets a load of abuse and bullshit running politics?

    HJ - you need to remember that if someone is interested in improving their running by whatever means they feel the need to try, then that can only be a good thing. Have you ever tried anything relating to running to make you better or faster or whatever? and don't come back on and say "only if it's proven..." who cares. You also mention that you've never had any injuries either, so it's clear you'll never understand someone who suffers injuries regular and is trying new techniques in a bid to be more efficient and reduce the risk of these injuries occurring.

    As for all the studies and research and wu and all that other crap, she didn't ask for any of that, or any advice either. She just wanted to know if anyone is interested and you're clearly not so why bother replying at all.

  • For what its worth, I used to be a heavy heal striker and always got painful knees but I used the methods in a Chi running book to change to mid-foot striking and I have since had about 7 years of running with no knee problems.

    I think any method that teaches you to improve your running form is worthwhile, including chi running, pose etc.

    Knowing that you should land with your foot under your centre of gravity with your knee slightly bent, or whatever, is all very well but it doesn't  necessarily mean that you will be able to do it. The thing I liked about the Chi running book was that it gave you some exercises to do that taught you to improve your form.

    As I say Pose or some other method or a good old fashioned running coach are no doubt just as useful but Chi running can work so don't knock it until you have tried it.

  • Farnie image

    nice work

  • @Farnie - another entirely useless post from you - a nice collection of completely unrelated content.  You asked specific questions and I addressed them all.  You even quoted things I've said that have no relation to my running style whatsoever.  My injury was as a result of coming off a bike in a car park.  Sore nipples are to to with clothing.  Feel free to explain how any of those injuries could be helped by spending £100 on a running improvement course  You've entirely missed it on this one.

     @Yorkshire Rob - go back to the first page.  People clearly think Chi Running is crap.  The OP got narked at the responses, so I stepped with something more constructive that the previous posters.  People come here asking for advice, and on this topic that is generally "Don't".  There's absolutely nothing wrong with trying to improve or work out how to avoid injury, but there are better ways than this Chi crap, including joining a running club.  Who cares if it's proven?  Do you want some of my anti-dinosaur rocks, too?  The OP has most certainly not had any abuse from me.

    @dibbers - the interview also says "Previous studies show no meaningful difference in economy between different footstrike patterns. I think the best choice for a runner is to do what the body naturally wants to do rather than to try to change it to become someone they're not."  Read the interview here.  One of the last points Hunter makes is "Runners should not try to change their footstrike pattern from what their body naturally wants to do. This will lead to a greater injury risk and probably metabolic cost. There are no conclusive studies saying either footstrike pattern is better than the other for injury risk or performance."

    @Kryten - stump up the wedge and I'll give it a go.

    FWIW, the OP should go for the two day Chi Running course.  Her money, her homeopathy.

  • HJ - Precisely my point, the OP got narked because you all started chuntering on about how crap Chi running was when she didn't even ask you that.

    Hywel Jenkins wrote (see)
    This was the first time I've heard of it, so I had a quick google. £100 seems steep for something that's got foundations in Wu, but I can appreciate how coaching in better technique might be useful. It would, however, help if there was any real evidence to support the claims its founder is making. Without that it's just homeopathy...
    Hywel Jenkins wrote (see)

    @Farnie - no, I haven't. Unless there's evidence for it (indepently verified) or someone else is paying, I'm not interested, regardless of what it is. I don't make decisions based on anecdotal opinion. I know I won't like the taste of dog crap, but I've never eaten that.

    @YorkLass - people would have been more supportive if you'd chosen something that isn't based on Wu. Even people who believe in Chi reckon DD has a poor undertanding of it.

    I have a collection of rocks that keep dinosaurs away. Anyone want one? They're £15 inc P&P.

    In what way is that lot constructive? Fair play it wasn't just you at the beginning of the thread but you've constantly offered strong opinions on a technique you freely admit you know nothing about besides a quick google.

    OP didn't mention getting into chirunning because it was based on wu or anything else but just because she's had injuries and has looked into chirunning and decided it was worth trying out in exactly the same way that lots of runners may choose to buy support shoes because they believe it may help them avoid injury (which incidently has never been properly proven either way)

    Also btw your mention of not liking dog crap doesn't support the point you're trying to make, you don't offer any evidence why you won't like dog crap but merely an opinion which is exactly what people who advocate chirunning are doing (obviously not including those with a vested interest)

  • Ok, I was the first to back chat. Sorry about that, I was bored. But I have enjoyed the rest of this thread. But seriously now...

    If you want to make the move away from ‘traditional’ running shoes and heel striking – for whatever reason – what’s wrong with doing it this way…

    Buy yourself a slightly lighter, more minimalist shoe (a “performance” shoe or “racer/trainer”). Probably of the same ‘type’ as your traditional shoe (i.e. with or without a medial post). Start incorporating it into your weekly mileage – just on a few of your short runs to start with.

    Because of the thinner midsole and less cushioning in the heel, your body will feel less comfortable heel striking so will naturally strike more towards the midfoot / forefoot to allow the body to absorb the shock in its own way.

    This will force the calves to work harder, they will feel sore to start with. Once you and your calves get used to / adapt to this, wear the lighter shoes for more of your longer runs until the body adapts again.

    When you get to the point when you can run all of your previous weekly mileage comfortably (or at least with no more discomfort than you usually had!)…

    (and this could take from a few weeks to months or even a year or more)

    Buy a new even lighter, even more minimalist shoe (maybe a 10k / half marathon racer) and go through the whole process again.

    Even thinner midsole – even less cushioning – body will naturally want to forefoot strike even more to absorb shock… etc. until your body gets used to this shoe.

    Then go buy the thinnest racing flat you can find…

    Then buy a Vibram FF shoe.

    To me this method makes sense. You’re letting your own body adapt at its own rate. The human body is pretty good at that, it knows and learns what it needs to do – millions of years of evolution for you.

    As opposed to ‘forcing’ it to learn a new running technique – that’s what I think is un-natural…

  • Mr Majestic - nothing wrong with what you're saying here, but if people want to go and try a workshop so they can feel more comfortable that they're doing things correctly then I don't see a problem with it.

    That said, it's often advised by experienced barefoot and minimal shoe runners to avoid trying to transition by using thinner and thinner shoes. Apparently you learn quicker and pick up less bad habits if you start by going completely barefoot for 5 mins in your normal run (wearing your current shoes for the rest of the run) and build up to being able to do the whole run barefoot before buying minimal shoes. I don't know whether this is correct or not but it does seem to make sense to me anyway. (I don't have any hard evidence though in case HJ was wondering image)

  • Sure Rob, I can see that would be another way to convert.

    But it doesn't answer the question "do we need to be taught how to run barefoot?"

    (and don't neglect your other threads...)
  • I don't bother with fora too much and this thread reminds me why! I checked this one because of the thread title but quickly became frustrated by the know it alls who know very little to nothing!

    I have not been on a Chi running course but have the book and DVD. If I lived near Leeds or if a course was held near to me then I would attend. Most of my running is off road and, being a bit on the heavy side have always thought that I needed the most high tech' type of shoe for road running....since Chi running I now run in "bare foot" problems at all.

    Chi running works for me, it may not work for you or others, but it works for me and so I would suggest that you can disregard the "Chi running is crap"  comments because they are made by those "all the right gear and no idea" types who so haunt these fora. 

    I have read on other threads about how "this" is crap and "that" is rubbish, they add nothing to any topic.

    Bye the way, I seldom use any sort of chemical substance when I have a cold or pain etc....the "placebo" affect of homeaopathy or Reiki always works. Unlike the chemicals and antibiotics used by the "know it alls"!


  • Interestingly, I am close to attempting a switch to pose running myself (whether I mean Pose, Chi or Barefoot I'm not sure) after reading 'Born to Run: The Rise of Ultra-running and the Super-athlete Tribe' and feeling that a lot of what is written in that book is probably true. However, I still want to get some sort of statistical evidence (a large sample comparison of injury rates in barefoot vs non-barefoot) and at the moment there's simply insufficient evidence for the Benefits.

    Of course from my point of view it would help if things like VFFs were a bit more reasonably priced image
  • Oh, and if anyone's read this study ('Ground reaction force differences between running shoes, racing flats, and distance spikes in runners') it's not conclusive and doesn't claim to be. Moreover, the study involved only 20 people,hardly a decent sample, so the results need to be taken with a pinch of salt. The conclusions drawn are related to forces between foot and ground rather than injury rates, so it's not directly comparable to what we are talking about.

    As I've said, I'm close to making a change to barefoot/chi/pose running myself to at least give it a try and see what it does for me, but I'd happily argue with anyone who says that the current evidence out there proves that this type of running reduces injury.
  • Mr M
    To me this method makes sense. You’re letting your own body adapt at its own rate. The human body is pretty good at that, it knows and learns what it needs to do – millions of years of evolution for you.

    Yes,only to a point. My body learns and adapts to slouching when I sit in a chair; my core goes weak, my sholders round over. The more I do it, the more natural it feels. Certain muscles stretch, whilst other shorten making the slouching feel even more natural over time. You see many people walking around with one shoulder lower than the other, orone foot lands pointing outwards. I'm pretty sure they think they're nicely aligned and feel their body positions are 'natural'.

    What I'm trying to say is that our bodies do adapt to things but not always in a positive way, and at times we need to  body sense, be pro-active  and make adjustments. Often you're trying to break life long habbits, and that takes focus, time and energy. Not everyone wants to make that investment. A workshop such as Ch, or Pose, or even Yoga and Pilates calsses all help with this process. It's a good thing.

    My analogy is this: If you were making a wheeled vehicle to be very efficient and last as long as possible, you'd make sure the wheels were aligned with each other, nice and smooth rims and perfectly balanced. Imagine if those wheels were not perfectly round, but hexagon shaped, and one wheel pointed outwards, the back wheel was slightly loose and there was uneven weight placed upon it, and was a bit weak between the front and back wheels. It wouldn't do very well, would it? It would iether break down before long, or just be slow and use lots of energy.

  • @Wej - although the sample size is small, it's the only publicly available information produced by real scientists I could find.  Since then, I've also found this one from Science of Sport.

    @the old buzzard - your points on reiki and homeopathy have blown all credibility for your standpoint out of the water.  Shhh.  I've provided links to real research, yet all the arguments against mine are basically "it works for me" or "you're an idiot", which is not a-typical of people who've parted with cash and may now be wondering why.

    You will, no doubt, be pleased to know that I'm finished with this topic.  I maintain that it's purely a mechanism for sucking money out of people who already have all the gear and still don't have any idea.  "It works for me" is no validification for anything.  A friend of mine reckons that Arnica 30C works for he when she uses it over the course of a week.

    Your money, lose it as you best see fit.

  • Dr.DanDr.Dan ✭✭✭

    There are science journals and there are HIGH IMPACT science journals. Nature is at the top of the tree. This very recent Nature paper shows that barefoot fore-foot striking produces less impact than shod heel-striking. It doesn't show that this leads to less injury ... that requires further research. It also doesn't show whether fore-foot striking in shoes is different to fore-foot striking barefoot.

    Lieberman et al. (2010) Nature 263: 531-535  "Foot strike patterns and collision forces in habitually barefoot versus shod runners"

    ABSTRACT: Humans have engaged in endurance running for millions of years, but the modern running shoe was not invented until the 1970s. For most of human evolutionary history, runners were either barefoot or wore minimal footwear such as sandals or moccasins with smaller heels and little cushioning relative to modern running shoes. We wondered how runners coped with the impact caused by the foot colliding with the ground before the invention of the modern shoe. Here we show that habitually barefoot endurance runners often land on the fore-foot (fore-foot strike) before bringing down the heel, but they sometimes land with a flat foot (mid-foot strike) or, less often, on the heel (rear-foot strike). In contrast, habitually shod runners mostly rear-foot strike, facilitated by the elevated and cushioned heel of the modern running shoe. Kinematic and kinetic analyses show that even on hard surfaces, barefoot runners who fore-foot strike generate smaller collision forces than shod rear-foot strikers. This difference results primarily from a more plantarflexed foot at landing and more ankle compliance during impact, decreasing the effective mass of the body that collides with the ground. Fore-foot- and mid-foot-strike gaits were probably more common when humans ran barefoot or in minimal shoes, and may protect the feet and lower limbs from some of the impact-related injuries now experienced by a high percentage of runners.


    CONCLUDING PARAGRAPH: Evidence that barefoot and minimally shod runners avoid RFS strikes with high-impact collisions may have public health implications. The average runner strikes the ground 600 times per kilometre, making runners prone to repetitive stress injuries. The incidence of such injuries has remained considerable for 30 years despite technological advancements that provide more cushioning and motion control in shoes designed for heel–toe running. Although cushioned, high-heeled running shoes are comfortable, they limit proprioception and make it easier for runners to land on their heels. Furthermore, many running shoes have arch supports and stiffened soles that may lead to weaker foot muscles, reducing arch strength. This weakness contributes to excessive pronation and places greater demands on the plantar fascia, which may cause plantar fasciitis. Although there are anecdotal reports of reduced injuries in barefoot populations, controlled prospective studies are needed to test the hypothesis that individuals who do not predominantly RFS either barefoot or in minimal footwear, as the foot apparently evolved to do, have reduced injury rates.

  • But again that only proves what is common sense anyway and can be tested by simply taking off your shoes and attempting to run landing on your heels. You can't, because the impact is too hard, so you land on your mid-foot. This isn't a learned behaviour, it's how your body works.


    1. If a person is wearing shoes that protect the heel and dissipates a large portion of the force, then this will obviously be better than doing this with no shoes on.

    2. If a person is a fore/mid-foot runner but wears shoes then is he any better/worse off than someone who doesn't wear shoes and is a fore/mid-foot runner.

    3. What are the comparative injury rates for all these different cases.

    Until we have a large sample decent scientific article covering this, it's still just anecdotal. As I've said previously, it makes sense to me and I'd prefer to go down this route with my running, but given that you need to wear something on your feet when running and VFFs are so expensive, I need to know that I'm doing the right thing in switching.
  •  Blimey.....

     I just know that heel striking (in the correct shoes) has resulted in injuries. I can't really blame overtraining as I have never got past a 10k and I haven't done more distance/time than is recommended, I've repeated training weeks, taken rest weeks, done all the *right* things and now it's time to start looking around for a different solution.

    Why people can't understand that is beyone me though. I'm not saying that chirunning is the answer to everything, that it is any sort of miracle solution for anything, or that everyone should do it - horses for courses and all that! But it's worth checking out for me, and I just wondered if anyone else fancied it?!

    Gawd......chill out!!


  • I'm not gettin into the debate LOL.

    Yorkslass, contact me via PM - I want to go with you.

  • yah well said yorks image
  • TurboElli - I don't seem to have the "message member" option under your post - can you contact me? image


    Edited to add: yep I've checked - you have your setting things set so that you don't accept messages. x

  • Fwiw

    I brought the Chi running book last Autumn as I seemed to be suffering from injury after injury.

    I do not particularly subscribe to the inner Chi thing but the mechanics of the style make sense. I have over the last 6 months gone from heel striker to mid - fore foot runner and have not have any injuries since.

    But and this is a big but this could also be down to the fact that I have upped my mileage and trained smarter and stuff.

    So I'm not sure if Chirunning cured me from injury but I know it make me run more efficiently and faster.

    So I would say for me it has worked

    oh and as a side effect I managed to make a pair of shoes last for 1300 milesimage

    So Yorklass I would go for it.

  • Yorkslass sorry I didnt even realise.
    Have sent you a message now x
  • image I'm just going to lurk now know Farnie fairly well, While she's a very nice person, she's up the duff so might be emotional, a ex squadie and has done stuff on a national level. Sooner or later she will lose her temper and then frankly it's going to be like a battle scene from lord of the rings. imageimage
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