Running Technique for Triathlon

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Running Technique for Triathlon


Important laws of physics governing running performances:

  • The motion of a triathlete when running is affected by the following forces: gravity (earth's attraction) and thrust (forces exerted by the triathlete: support to remain uprights and propulsion to move forwards).
  • The action of running essentially comprises three phases: the aerial phase (when motion is affected by gravity only), the landing phase (in which the body absorbs the impact of landing and uses the elasticity of the muscles and tendons to store the energy) and the thrust phase (in which the stored energy is released and the body is propelled forwards).
  • The force of gravity remains constant.
  • The longer the aerial phase is, the greater will be the effort on landing.

Importance of technique:

  • By improving your technique, you can gain time without any extra effort.
  • Technique has a much smaller effect on performance for running than for swimming and cycling.

Basic running technique:

  • The arms and shoulders should be relaxed.
  • It is important to try to keep your centre of gravity on the same line, i.e. do not bounce too high.
  • Breathing is geared to the rhythm of your strides. When breathing out, expel as much air as possible.
  • Your breathing rate will depend on the intensity of the effort. My breathing rate is generally 2 strides per inhalation and 3 strides per exhalation in training, and 1 stride per inhalation and 2 strides per exhalation when racing.
  • Your step should be as light as possible.
  • Do not bring your foot down too far forward as this will slow you down.
  • Behind each stride there is an explosive backward movement.


  • Avoid unnecessary efforts when running.

Le site Mission Triathlon est la disposition de tous les triathlètes souhaitant optimiser leur préparation au triathlon. Vous y trouverez des conseils comme la technique de natation pour le triathlon, la technique de vélo pour le triathlon, technique de course à pied pour le triathlon, l'alimentation pour le triathlon ou la musculation pour le triathlon. Vous pouvez aussi utiliser gratuitement le carnet d'entraînement online ou demander un devis pour un programme d'entraînement de triathlon personnalisé.