How to improve your uphill and downhill running!

Mastering proper trail running technique

In addition to the right equipment, concentration, endurance and sure-footedness are especially important. The courses are designed to assist you in developing the proper trail running techniques to help you save energy and to increase your confidence for running safely over variable terrain. These are essential skills if you’re going to tackle 52 kilometres. Here are some exercise tips from our trail running guide Meex:

    From a standing position, bend forward at an edge and start running just before you fall over. Your foot will automatically touch down on the forefoot.

    Run downhill at high speed on a narrow trail and use wide, lateral strides to control speed and remain stable in motion.

    If you get too fast running downhill, you can take the speed out with jumps. It is important to choose a large stone or a firm terrain edge on which you can step safely and stably. Furthermore, foot-to-eye coordination is important to identify jumping and landing points.

    The correct use of poles relieves your legs. Use the alternating or double pole plant technique that matches the type of terrain and your speed. However, the use of poles must be practised. When walking uphill, their length should be about 70% of the body height. Downhill, the poles should be about five to ten centimetres longer.

    If you are running uphill without poles, you need to have an effective arm swing. The so-called runner's triangle serves as a guide for your arm position. Swing your arms vigorously back and forth and take the momentum up with you.

    On the backswing of your arm there should be a triangle visible between the torso and upper and lower arms.

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