As an elite runner, it is important to put a lot of time and effort into making sure you do everything you can to be successful.
However, if you have read my blog for any amount of time, you will know that I pride myself on being easy to relate to, and real.
I am not showing you these for you to admire, but these are real things that you can incorporate into your training to become a better runner.
I don’t beat around the bush with things, I am honest and open (as you can read in my Be Brave, Be Strong, Be YOU post), and I honestly believe these secrets of success will make you feel more confident as a person, as well as doing what is best for your running.
Hopefully you can use at least a few of them to be the best you can be.
How do running drills help runners?
Drills will help you concentrate on getting your form right, which will translate over to running more efficiently, running more efficiently will lead to running faster, and we all know what running faster leads to; big PRS!
Drills should be completed 2-3 times per week; before workouts, and after recovery runs to assist strides in prepping those fast twitch muscles for workouts/races.
There are a number of drills that different athletes use. I actually only do three of these (as you will see), but I have included another set of videos to show you some other popular running drills, check them out on my YouTube channel, which you can get to HERE.
High knee drills for runners
Drive your knees up high, and pump your arms back and forward to bring more motion to your legs.
Focus on bringing your quad muscle parallel with the floor, and your foot should also be parallel to the floor before it goes back down. You should not be moving very fast as the movement should be mostly up and down rather than forwards.
Butt kick drills for runners
Similar to High Knees with the arms, but the legs should be tucked under you more as you do what the title says; kick your butt!
Runner shuffle drill
I call this shuffle, but it is also a version of B Skips.
The focus should be on snapping your foot back to underneath you as fast as possible.
This one takes some practice as it begins similar to high knees, but you should snap your leg back faster towards the center of your body.
If you need to do it as a walking drill first, it is important to get the motion down before you try running.
Bounding drill for runners
This one is best shown by this video
Carioca drill for runners
This video is a little long, but it is a complicated exercise for first timers, so it breaks it down step by step!
Backward running drills for runners
Hamstring extension drills
Here’s Bobby again!
High skipping drill
And there you have it.
Chose a few of these to do each time you do drills. I would definitely recommend the three that I do, but if you prefer some of the others, that is okay too!
These are best to do before strides as they encourage you to focus on correct running form. You can then apply that correct running form to your strides.
Oh, and do not worry about strange looks from people as you do this. They are most likely in awe of you!
What is your pre workout/race routine? Do you ever get strange looks when you are doing your exercises?
I have actually never done strides before! I do most of those exercises during HIIT workouts, ha, but not for running, though I should! Thanks for explaining everything 🙂
Tina this is great! I don't do drills but know I need to – thanks for providing so many great options!
These are great videos and drills. I know if I did more drills it would really help-don't know why I don't do them. Great post!
I seriously need you here to come and kick my a$$. My pre-run routine already takes about 30 minutes, so I think that after I did this I would have done a full workout, haha. I do add/abductors and hip openers, ankle mobilites, and then romanian deadlifts, golf ball pickups, and adductors squats. And I'm still just running to build strength, and not be paranoid…
I always do drills before a track workout or race, but I must admit, I'm not great at getting them done any other time. This tutorial is very helpful!
I love your incorporation of the videos. While I am not that serious of a runner, I can see how these drills are helpful for building strength and agility. Maybe if I did them, I would be more serious 🙂
I love reading your blog because you're so full of good advice! Seriously, this is awesome and videos help a lot. I'm such a visual person and usually need to see it xx
Drills are so key! I coach HS girls and we do drills before every run and race. We do this in part because it creates a routine and manages nerves on race day and in part because it encourages good form. Plus, teaching freshman the chicken scratch (B Skip) is always a great day.
You look so cute doing them! I don't do drills in a running sense, but I do high knees and butt-kicks when working out at home. I'll be sure to start doing your three before my speed workouts each week!
I am loving this series you are doing! Keep these tips coming! 🙂 I used to do these in high school, and I need to start doing these again.
Great post. I'm sad to say I don't do these myself anymore, but my cross country team incorporates the high knees, butt kicks, high skips and karaokes. I like the shuffle though, so I think I might add that as well. And I think strides are a runner's secret weapon 🙂
Absolutely – yes to these! I usually do butt kicks, high knees, bounding and hamstring toe touches. I think the shuffle thing you're doing too – I'll have to try that!
I love all these tips. At least you're confirming that I'm doing a few things right 🙂
Alex has been running a lot and he's been trying to get faster. These tips are perfect for him!
I miss these!! Since I rarely race anymore I got out of the habit of doing drills. I used to love drills in college – up and down the infield!!!
I am always amazed at how technical running is. I always just thought you put on a pair of shoes and just ran. It's way more than that. Articles like this amaze me! And no, I don't do drills but I kind of quite running.
This is AWESOME!!!!! Thank you for sharing all of these great warmups!
I fall in and out of the habit of drills, but I'm never sorry I did them! Thanks for the reminder!
This is great! I do high knees, butt kicks and carioca. I love doing carioca because it reminds me of my high school team sports days!
you seriously need to move here! we love those drills. Great job and thanks for always sharing!
Believe it or not I actually do every single one of these in track!! I get really lazy with these when we don't have practice.. I wonder if I'm the only one that thought carioca was “karaoke”? haha!
We used to do so many drills when I ran cross-country in high school… I need to bring these back to my routine!
Whaaaaaat! Heather! You need to add them in there! They do help, I promise!
Thanks Michelle! Hope they help!
Thanks Deborah, give it a chance…..what do you have to lose? 🙂
Hehe, if you werent so far away I would come do that! Hopefully I can guilt you into it instead? That is quite a bit, but when I race I take 50 minutes in my warm up routine, so you get no sympathy there :p
Yeah, I can be lazy sometimes too, but they are so important that we need to keep them up. I will if you will? 🙂
Only one way to find out…..;)
Thanks lovely lady! Glad you enjoyed it!
That is great! Glad you are getting them started early 🙂 Definitely true about managing nerves! Hahahahah yes so true! It can be very funny to watch!
Haha I look like a dork, but thank you! Let me know how you get on!
Yay! That is so nice to hear! I will keep them going as long as I can! Good luck bringing them back in!
Thanks debbie, I knew your athletes would have them in there! Strides….definitely! Trick your legs into speed!
Give it a go…its tough at first, but walk it if you have to….just maybe not before this weekend 🙂 I am glad you are doing all you can! That is how you earned your race this weekend!
I hope he finds they help! Let me know how it goes!
Give them a go…now you are out of your comfort zone 😛
Yeah, people often think that, but little things like this make all the difference.
Thanks Danielle 🙂
Get back in them 😛 They help! 🙂
Yeah, I think most schools did them at some point. It makes you feel so coordinated when you get it right!
If you can get me a job there….I will 😛
Thats awesome! Your coach knows what he/she is doing…and it shows in your results 🙂 Nope! I definitely thought that for a long time!
Give it a go….see if it is like riding a bike? 🙂
These are great drills! Easy to do and I need to get in the habit of incorporating drills into my pre workout.
I do most of my exercises where no on can see me 🙂 Thanks for all the great info Tina!