Optimize Your Running Stride With the Function Run Drill

Use this running mobility drill to improve your gait and create a more efficient running stride.



The function run is not how you should run, and it is not a running technique. The function run is a way to retrain your body to move efficiently without compensations.

The Function Run, Broken Down

If your shoulders and back get sore and tired when you run, this means your lower limbs and hips are not doing their jobs. Instead, your upper body has taken over and is doing the majority of the work when you run.

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The function run emphasizes the heel-ball-toe foot strike of walking to force the primary movers of the legs and hips to kick in and learn how to function properly in running. After performing the function run, you will naturally break into a running stride that is freer and more efficient.


  • Use a deliberate heel-ball-toe foot strike with your feet straight
  • Pace should be slower than a walk, and the stride should be bouncy and short
  • Keep shoulders, upper body, and belly relaxed
  • Keep shoulders over the hips, resist the temptation to lean forward
  • Breathe into your belly
  • Come off the center of your foot, and roll off of all five toes
  • Make sure your shoulders and hips face straight ahead and do not rotate or twist

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Function run length can vary from ten minutes to one hour. Try using it as a warm up or incorporate it into your regular mobility and body maintenance routine.

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