A slight lean forward while running puts you in a good posture for strong push-off and glute engagement. It helps to get a better economy while running. Lean forward posture naturally engages the core. Lean should come from the ankle (as against bending at the waist), aligning it with the lumbar spine, and keeping the pelvis neutral.
Wall Drill is a classic running-form drill to teach lean forward body posture. Wall Drill also helps with learning to drive the knee up while running.
How to do it
This drill requires wall support.
- Stand a few feet away from the wall, and face yourself towards the wall.
- Stand with your hands touching the wall at shoulder height with straight elbows.
- Step back and forward to adjust the distance so that you lean forward slightly from the ankle. Ensure your body is in a straight line as you lean against the wall as shown in figure A.
- During the lean; your head, lumbar, pelvic spine, and ankle should be neutral and aligned in a straight line
- Once you are in this position, stand on the toes of one leg, and drive the other knee forward towards the wall, as shown in figure B
- Actively hold the raised knee position for a few seconds (10-20s), and then get back to the ground. As you land, ensure you are landing on the toes. Ensure the hip is not dropping while holding this position.
- Repeat the same with the other leg.
- As you progress, make it more dynamic by reducing the time you will hold raised knee position as if you are running in place.
When to do it
Since this is a form drill, doing the drill before your run makes it easy to transcend to running. Keep the cues in mind while running - lean from the ankle, keep the body neutral, and don’t arch the back.