What is ChiRunning?

ChiRunning is a technique developed by ultra-runner Danny Dreyer based on his 30-year practice of T’ai Chi and his 45 years of running, racing and coaching hundreds of thousands of runners. The central principles are energy efficiency, injury-prevention and “intelligent movement.”

These principles are best learned through alignment and relaxation. Running with a strong core and a relaxed body helps to reduce overuse and impact injuries. The ChiRunning technique combines the central movement principles of T’ai Chi with the sport of running, by shifting the workload from the smaller muscles in your legs to your core muscles.

In ChiRunning your efficiency comes from allowing gravity to assist your propulsion, taking the workload off your legs and letting you run lightly and swiftly like you did as a youth. Through the practice of ChiRunning you will learn to use the two forces that act against every runner to your advantage: the downward force of gravity and the force of the ground coming at you. The runner cooperates (a) with gravity by a controlled forward fall into it and, (b) with the force of the oncoming road by swinging the legs rearward. When you learn to work with these two forces, you can move with fluidity, balance, and power.

Too often, runners assume that they are too old to run, not meant to run, afraid to run, too frustrated to run or perhaps struggling with discomfort or injury. Experienced and competitive runners may assume their injuries are a natural and unavoidable consequence of distance, speed or simply running. ChiRunning is both a philosophy and collection of techniques that reject these limiting mindsets. It focuses on a sequence of key elements that allow runners with a variety of existing skills, experiences, backgrounds, and goals, to achieve their potential. Runners who experience chronic injuries are likely exhibiting bad form. ChiRunning focuses on a sequence of preparatory techniques that include alignment, core engagement, balance, and forward movement to keep runners performing efficiently and safely.

Whether you’re an injured runner, beginner, marathoner, triathlete, or someone who runs to stay fit, ChiRunning can help you improve your technique, reduce injury, and achieve your personal fitness goals – just as it has helped thousands of others. 

Regardless of your experience and level, ChiRunning can help you:
• Set yourself up for a lifetime of injury-free running
• Build confidence in your abilities
• Go farther or faster with less effort
• Improve your body alignment for optimal efficiency
• Lower impact to your joints
• Reduce the work of your legs – at any speed
• Build core strength with every step
• Run with whole-body relaxation
• Become more mindful in how you use your body
• Become a highly efficient and adaptable runner