Learning how to run a curve track can be tricky; especially if you are used to running on a trail. It is not as simple as just running around the circle or oval. Running a curve is different than running a straightaway; they require a different set of technical skills. Follow these tips to ensure that you have the best track season possible.
To learn how to run a curve track, you will need the following items:
- Access to a track
- Racing flats or spikes
- Get the proper shoes for running on the track. In order to run a curve track, you can't have some bulky, trail shoe. You need to get spikes, if you are trying to sprint or racing flats if you want to run a longer distance on a curve track, such as the 5000 meters or the 10,000 meters. Because tracks are flat surface, you don't need the extra weight of a training shoe, it will just slow you down.
- Run close to the inside lane. Don't step over the line and don't go into another runner's lane. This might sound easy, but if you are not used to running a curve track, running within your parameters might be challenging.
- Drop your left shoulder when you are running the curve. Don't drop your shoulder excessively so that it throws you off balance, but lean into the curve. This will take some practice before you get the "feel" of it.
- Use your arms around the curve of the track. You still want to be relaxed, but you will definitely want to swing your arms up and down (don't bring them beyond your hip). Your arms can go up and down as much as you want, but make sure they are not flying out in front of your body.
- Watch other runners run the curve of the track. One of the best ways of learning is through imitation. Watch more seasoned runners go around the track. Notice what they are doing with their arms. Notice their form. Try to imitate what they are doing.