Trying out something new...running form๐Ÿƒ - Bridge to 10K

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Trying out something new...running form๐Ÿƒ

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Hi, I was interested by the article in runners world and the video link from Pinkaardvark in a reply to a post by Jimmers the other day, about engaging your glutes when running.

The idea is I believe, to tighten (squeeze) your buttocks and pull up your pelvis, like when doing the bridge exercise lying down (or pelvic tilt as I used to call it) whilst running...

I have been trying this on my last few runs and can really feel the difference in my form. I find it easier to use my arms in the correct motion..that is driving them back straight and actually feeling the push... and it feels natural.

My hips are doing the driving so its easier on the lower legs, and my pace has improved considerably.

I'm not able to keep this up all the time, but keep remembering to adjust for short spells.

Has anyone else had success with this, and are there any pitfalls to be aware of? I did suffer a calf strain from pushing a bit the first time I tried this, but now am careful not to tense up too much in the legs.

Its different to how I have run up until now, which although quite an upright stance, trying to land lightly was just the legs only, and my arms although moving weren't pushing much.

I'm not particularly looking for speed, its just a by-product!๐Ÿ˜‰

Any comments will be most welcome๐Ÿ˜Šx

55 Replies
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I haven't seen the article, but might try this when I run tomorrow - thanks :-)

BluebirdrunnerGraduate10 in reply to SuzyKK

I will put the link in here, I don't think Pinkaardvark will mind..x

And a video...


This all sounds extremely interesting and very tricky... I need to give it a try :)

I have used the tightened buttocks bit... akin to the exercise , imagine holding a penny ( old) between your buttocks! I am not sure why I did that..??? I think it was to do with pelvic floor muscles.. ???? It was a while ago... ! My arms, I have always used to drive me the pistons on a steam train... I make the same steam engine noise too!

Thanks for this...( and the link?) I shall try it on Sunday, weather permitting!

This running lark is great fun isn't it:) xx

BluebirdrunnerGraduate10 in reply to Oldfloss

Hi Floss, I don't want anyone to hurt themselves trying this, but I have been surprised by the lightness I have felt.

I hope Sunday is weather friendly and that you enjoy a lovely run! ๐Ÿ˜Šxxx

OldflossAdministrator in reply to Bluebirdrunner

Thanks you.. I just read something about this on the net, but they imagine holding a 100 dollar bill between the buttocks...the article was called.. Lazy Butt !!!!!

SutshaGraduate10 in reply to Oldfloss

This is the advice given to power-walkers in the Moon Walk guidance. I didn't realise it was also beneficial to running so haven't practiced this for a while. I think I'll give it a go too! ๐Ÿ˜

OldflossAdministrator in reply to Sutsha

T'was different and fun:) Thanks Bluebirdrunner xxx

SutshaGraduate10 in reply to Oldfloss

So, I managed to get back into it really quickly since I've done it before. Calf thanked me for it too! Bluebirdrunner and/or Irishprincess, or indeed anyone else who can share insights, when you're doing the glute-squeeze technique, do you also tuck your pelvis under? I think I saw something in one of the recent video clips linked in, perhaps the chi-running one and I'm not sure if I was getting it right today. I squeezed and tucked, stayed tall, and relaxed. Seems like a contradictory statement with this list! How did everyone else do?

BluebirdrunnerGraduate10 in reply to Sutsha

I tuck too in the Bridge exercises I'm used to doing... this is all new to me though still trying this out while running....

Did you notice a difference with your arm propulsion...they seemed to work harder for me...?

Looking forward to my next run.๐Ÿ˜Šx

OldflossAdministrator in reply to Bluebirdrunner

Tucking and I said before..little pistons...steam train style...whoo whoo!

SutshaGraduate10 in reply to Bluebirdrunner

I found it easy while walking briskly as that was familiar, but it's so much harder when running somehow. Managed it most of the run though, not the 2K when I was struggling on unstable trails beside the disused railway due to the rocks underfoot, but that's to be expected.

My arms already do the piston thing, which that come from the audiofuel podcasts and I've managed to keep that going.

When everything come together then I definitely felt like I was running stronger and more gracefully than usual. I'll certainly be keeping it up to see how things go.


OldflossAdministrator in reply to Sutsha

I tucked and sucked...๐Ÿ˜‰

SutshaGraduate10 in reply to Oldfloss


IrishprincessGraduate10 in reply to Sutsha

I do a set of pelvic exercises as part of my warm up as I need to loosen up my lower back. I tend to run in a neutral pelvis position but I do experiment all the time so see what feels better and have found that neutral feels more efficient.

IrishprincessGraduate10 in reply to Oldfloss

I do the coin between the buttocks thing too Floss ๐Ÿ˜ฎx

OldflossAdministrator in reply to Irishprincess

Tried it out this seemed to make a difference... I experimented... ! No coins were harmed !!!:)x


The coach at my club touched on what youโ€™ve described on Weds evening, along with striking on your forefoot/midfoot and just stroking the tarmac with your heel as you go through the gait cycle.

I naturally heel strike but am going to try all the above on my next run ๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿ˜Š

Watch this space ๐Ÿ˜Š

OldflossAdministrator in reply to TedG

I just kiss the ground with my feet ..ha ha!!!


This is really interesting. Thank you. I think I might try it next week. ๐Ÿ˜Š


Hmmm definitely food for thought..... donโ€™t know if the PR tomorrow is the time to try it (and not look like Benny Hill!)... but def on Monday...... that will also give me time to get over my first HIIT SESSION this morning! Ouch!

Thanks โญ๏ธ


Iโ€™m not actually sure what he means! Does he mean that we need to do the exercise before running and it turns a glute switch, or (this is the bit thatโ€™s confusing) do we stamp and push up when running......

Confused (.com)

BluebirdrunnerGraduate10 in reply to LoungeLizaard

Ha, not sure trying to look like the video man will be any use, I'm just being aware of those muscles and trying to use them when I run...

Please don't hurt yourself though...


Interesting post Bluebirdrunner and pinkaardvark. I may need to try this as well, but I think iโ€™ll wait until after my next race. No need hurting something beforehand in case I do it wrong. With all the hills iโ€™ve been doing this summer, I suspect my glutes have been rather engaged ๐Ÿ˜‚

BluebirdrunnerGraduate10 in reply to SaskAlliecat

Hi Allie, I'm sure you are doing absolutely fine, and your glutes are fully engaged on your trails and hills...

I have noticed a definate improvement though, with my arm movement acting in unison with my lower body and actually propelling me forward. (This wasn't really happening before, when Laura said drive with your arms... I would try but no real effect.)

I was pleased to get the reply from Irish Princess, and will carry on trying to improve my technique.


Hi Jan,

Pleased that you are getting results.

Thanks for posting this, missed it first time round.

Going to enquire further and in response to Mitch, I think the Auzzie is demonstrating how you fire and trigger your big muscles.Glutes in this case.

Eg.Bit like, You can have a strong core but forget to engage it.๐Ÿค”

I think the bridge exercise , horizontally,is to let you feel what it is like when your glutes are engaged,and the other initial stamp down, vertically, and glute squeeze is the trigger mechanism to do it and bring it into your running thrust and power.

Abdominal breathing is initially practised on your back and not standing up, eg.๐Ÿค”

Doubt if it means to knock the hell out of yourself every step.๐Ÿค”๐Ÿ˜‚

Kissing the ground is sustainable.

I am sure the brain must kick in sometime and the engagement of our glutes becomes easier and more natural.

Certainly there are gym exercises with the bands and sumo squats that incorporate engaging your glutes first.๐Ÿค”๐Ÿ‘

Maybe a bit like breathing stuff and many other things.

Practise makes perfect.But nice to understand comprehensively what he is asking.

Pleased for you Jan with your progress and look forward to hearing more.



I found the bit where he stood up and lifted his knees high difficult to understand because the coaching I have received has been telling me not to waste energy in vertical motion (don't bob up and down) and also to keep my feet as close to the ground as I can.

Confused of South Bucks!


Glutes are the cornerstone of the running movement so engaging them is a must in my humble opinion ๐Ÿ™‚ The glutes should be doing the work and are the powerhouse of the motion. The reason so many of us get injured is because we're using our knees or calves or any other part of our lower body to take the brunt when it's our glutes that are built for running and have the muscle capability to do it.(can you tell I'm a bit passionate about this one ๐Ÿ™„)

This is a good little exercise but I do squats as part of my warm-up and this gets the glutes engaging too. Like Oldfloss I imagine my buttocks are holding a coin between the cheeks and this helps keep me focused.

Great post Jan and very pertinent for us runners. How to engage our glutes is a commonly asked question and takes a bit of practice. Think "tight, tight" ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

Tbae in reply to Irishprincess

Just Brillant.๐Ÿ’ฅ๐Ÿƒโ€โ™€๏ธ๐Ÿ’ฅ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘

BluebirdrunnerGraduate10 in reply to Irishprincess

Thank you for your encouragement and insight IP...that's exactly what I wanted to know. I can definitely feel the difference and am working more efficiently. You're spot on about my legs doing all the work before I tried engaging the glutes ( which always just came along for the ride๐Ÿ˜†)...

I shall carry on learning to do this, its good to know improvements can be made. Good incentive to do more core exercises too!

Your royal approval is appreciated!๐Ÿ˜Šxxx

IrishprincessGraduate10 in reply to Bluebirdrunner

The longer I've done this running thing the more I appreciate my core and glutes as these are apparently the foundations of good running form. I've recently found a specific set of core exercises for runners which are just brilliant. I thought I had a strong core until I tried them! ๐Ÿ˜ฉ I must post the link for everyone and pass on the pain ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

MummycavModerator in reply to Irishprincess

Tight tight, hold that coin....will be my mantra next time out ๐Ÿ˜‰

OldflossAdministrator in reply to Mummycav

Clench that butt..Clench that butt! X

IrishprincessGraduate10 in reply to Mummycav

๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ Tight tight, keep upright is what goes through my head ๐Ÿ˜ฉ๐Ÿ˜ญ


I dimly remember a game at my stag night that did involve holding a coin in such a fashion and climbing over various obstacles before depositing it in a pint glass. Can't remember if it improved my posture at all.

Tbae in reply to SlowLoris


Just tried the bridge in the bath with arnica.

If you are anything like me, recommend do not remove the plug in case your cheeks disappear down the plug hole.No glutes is bad.๐Ÿ™ˆ

Incidentally there is another stretching exercise that is good during your soak, for something , forgotten now,lying on your back, reach out with one hand at a time and touch your toe and bring your knee upto your chest.Then your other side.Dont worry about the plug hole for this one.๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚


MummycavModerator in reply to SlowLoris

Ohhh, now that sounds like it requires skill & alcohol in boatloads!!! Lol...I am in awe of you managed it!!! ๐Ÿ˜‚

OldflossAdministrator in reply to SlowLoris

Oh dear....that takes me back..the rugby team the bar...Zulu Warrior..๐Ÿ˜‰

IrishprincessGraduate10 in reply to SlowLoris

Hahaha ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚


I am interested in this Jan, I donโ€™t experiment with my running form but I do try and lengthen my stride while Iโ€™m running & also the way I land, I tend to land lightly on the middle of my foot, I donโ€™t know if this is the correct way or not but I canโ€™t run any other you know, this week my ankle/Achilles has been playing up, maybe I should give this method a try?? My buttocks could do with a squeeze ๐Ÿ˜‚

Tbae in reply to Mummycav

Hi Bev,

Sorry to hear your news.

Hope you get sorted.

You are right not to play around too much with your natural running form.

Most coaches I understand only tweak things to improve your sustainability and minimise/ prevent injury.

Your mid foot is good and reduces load distribution.

Lengthing your stride perhaps not so good, particularly if it leads to overstriding with your knee.

Lauraโ€™s running form tips are good , and increasing your cadence, light quick steps, kissing the ground and footfall under your hips. Engaging the glutes as recently posted by Jan and all the replies,could help you also.

So lots to work on if you have time while you are resting/ recuperating.

I have long held the idea of lengthing stride, increasing cadence also and throwing feet out the rear.

Read lots of interesting stuff on cadence etc from Lordiโ€™s post and replies over on Marathon.If you have time.

I have an odd left leg,but more convinced with my running form that will give me a run all day pace and sustainability particularly for possibly a higher risk piece of kit anyway.

You take good care of you and try and be patient.

No major changes needed but we all have to keep tweaking perhaps.


Never thought as a Scot I would live to hear that being a tight ass is the way forward.๐Ÿ™ˆ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

BluebirdrunnerGraduate10 in reply to Mummycav

Ha, MummyCav as long as its only DaddyCav and you squeezing your glutes eh? :) :)

Sorry to hear of your ankle issue, I think longer runs do take their toll on the body. MICE and wait til you feel ready for your next run maybe...

My glute squeezing has been helping so I will carry on practising, I have found other articles on the web about it too. Maybe something to try on one of your shorter runs first...

Take care of that ankle :) xxx

GoGo_JoJoModerator in reply to Mummycav

Yes, I agree with Tbae... caution with lengthening stride, higher cadence rather than longer stride as it can put stresses on various parts. I've felt discomfort in hip adducters and right down my legs when striding too long but higher cadence doesn't add stress at all. ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿคž


Yes! Me! Iโ€™ve been working on this as well after reading Jimmers posts and having similar problems with my hips. I never had any โ€˜springโ€™ when getting on a horse, I slouch, and I knew I was relying too heavily on my thighs and calves. I got the feel for glutes first by the standing backwards heel press trying to not use my hamstrings. Also tried to feel the difference between the maximus and the medial glutes using exercises.

Iโ€™ve quickly adapted to running with the skateboard action and trying not to clench the maximus, unless I need to going uphill. I try to walk around more engaged, especially going upstairs, and use kicksets while swimming now to strengthen up.

One potential issue, I think, could be that your toes might turn out more if you clench, and this changes where the ground forces go. I had a known imbalance I am attempting to correct, but for some it may be a change too far. My running buddy noticed her hip ached more by engaging the glutes but she was already stronger than I was running up inclines.

BluebirdrunnerGraduate10 in reply to Equi-geek

Hi Equi-geek, thank for this... I will try to think of the skateboard action, or maybe one roller skate (having never been on a skateboard ;) ) ... Interesting too about the toes potentially turning out, another thing to watch for...

I do want to persevere, as like you am having results. It feels like I am going into a different gear, my pace has been pretty much the same for years, and I'm excited to see and feel the improvement.

Good luck with your work and I will be interested in how you are getting on. :) x

Just followed your post and used my glutes , 4 mins improvement,way to go.๐Ÿ™ˆ๐Ÿ˜‚

Well I am stretching a point perhaps.๐Ÿ™ˆBut What is not to like.

Result with Lauraโ€™s Stamina.

I was laughing when Laura said donโ€™t have tight shoulders.

So here is the message Jan, from Laura,

Relax and drop your tight shoulders,๐Ÿค”๐Ÿ™ˆ๐Ÿ˜‚

Head up and kiss your rhomboids lightly together,shoulder blades.๐Ÿค”

Tighten your glutes,quick, light cadence, kissing the ground, no overstriding and natural breathing, 1234, 1234.๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘

As a Scot I am still laughing, who would have known that a tight ass was the solution and not tight shoulders.๐Ÿค”๐Ÿ™ˆ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚


BluebirdrunnerGraduate10 in reply to Tbae

Nice work Tbae....will be doing the same thing next run..๐Ÿ˜† tweaking with care!

4 mins is brilliant....๐Ÿ˜Šx


Great post, and yes I most definitely find this helpful. I do it a lot on downhills when Iโ€™m tired and want to go faster. I think I should do it more often tho!!!


Very interesting. I'm about to head out and will be clenching as instructed!

BluebirdrunnerGraduate10 in reply to helenwheels

Hope you have a good run Helenwheels ๐Ÿ˜Šx

Tbae in reply to Bluebirdrunner

Oh Jan, what have you started.๐Ÿค”๐Ÿ™ˆ

HealthUnlocked or Clenchunlocked.๐Ÿค”

No reply required.๐Ÿ™ˆ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

PS, maybe new post All Things Clenched.๐Ÿค”

Clench you Sounds a bit different to Go you or Way to go.๐Ÿค”๐Ÿ˜‚

helenwheelsGraduate10 in reply to Bluebirdrunner

Well that was just weird! Ill try again next time....

BluebirdrunnerGraduate10 in reply to helenwheels

Ooh what happened...good or bad, will you post a run report? xx

Tbae in reply to helenwheels


Hope all is good Helen,

tweaking stuff without face to face coaching, is a difficulty, and this caring forum bound by running the golden thread, does an incredible job to allow us to share and make progress without that.

Hope you are good.๐Ÿ‘



It just felt very strange - I only managed for a few seconds at a time and John Cleese in the Ministry of Funny Walks came to mind!

However it did feel like switching up a gear. :)

BluebirdrunnerGraduate10 in reply to helenwheels

Ha, now I will be thinking that too๐Ÿ˜„...

Its interesting though and as long as it doesn't cause any injuries something to try out...๐Ÿ˜Šx

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