FIVE TIPS FOR TECHNICAL TRAIL RUNNING AND RACING

Trail running – the definition of running in rough terrain. Think of perpetual obstacles in your way and you get the idea.

Technical trail running refers to extreme running – we’re talking about running over terrain consisting of rocks, roots, mud and water as well as steep hills and declines often requiring upper body strength to get you over those rough patches.

Sound exciting? Then read on to learn a few pointers to get you started;

  • Focus on time and effort instead of speed and distance. Make the most out of your experience by focusing solely on the path in front of you and moving efficiently. This will definitely make the experience more exhilarating and not a killjoy.
  • Use balancing exercises and split and squat jumps in your exercise routine. Learning to anticipate and execute an awkward jump and landing is crucial when running in mountainous areas where rocks are aplenty.
  • Short quick steps are crucial in rough terrain in order to avoid energy burnout as well as make the rough terrain that much more intimidating. So, it is best to train by intentionally running with short steps and your eyes never leaving the surface area in front of you.
  • Make sure that the shoes you wear fit snugly. This will make twisting and spraining your ankle more unlikely. And make sure that your shoe has good tread to avoid slipping. A good tread will also keep your shoes clear of mud, debris and water. Run with your toes tilted upwardly by making sure you step high so that you don’t stub your toe on a rock ahead. Having a shoe with a rock plate built into it will make sure you don’t feel every bump underneath your feet, making for a more pleasurable run.
  • Keep a mindset that is fixed on your end goal and not on those around you. Focussing on everything around you AND the difficulty of the run ahead is much more likely to make you feel defeated. Make the terrain your only opposition.

Technical trail running is a sport that gets better with time and practise so take all the time you need. Why not consider training with a trekking pole? These will assist you in navigating jumps over streams, hills and descents and especially on tricky, uneven terrain where the ground is loose.

Not only this, but technical trails often provide the opportunity to run in the most majestic, often untouched landscape guaranteed to take your breath away. I mean who would say no to that? Check out our Facebook page for more!

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