Running Tip: Single Leg Balance

Single leg balance is a tremendously important tool in the runner’s toolbox. As runners, we’re balancing on one leg with every single stride we take. Improvement can reduce ground contact time and improve efficiency. Better balance helps eliminate wasted time and energy spent trying to stabilize at ground contact

Single leg balance being performed by On ZAP Endurance athlete Josh Izewski
On ZAP Endurance athlete Josh Izewski performing
the single leg balance drill

If you can improve your ability to balance on one leg you may spend just a fraction of a second less time on the ground with every stride. However, that can add up to big gains over the course of a long distance race.

To practice this stand on one leg and focus on driving your big toe into the ground. Keep a very slight bend in the knee, just enough so your knee isn’t locked. Keep your core tight and your hips level. Begin with your eyes open, but once you have good control you can progress to adding arm movements then torso rotations.

Once you have mastered that, move through the same progression with your eyes closed. Only progress once you can comfortably maintain control of your balance at each stage. Hold the position for 30 seconds at a time on each leg and try to incorporate it into your daily routine 2-3 times a day.

To view more on this you can watch Coach Ryan Warrenburg’s video here on our ZAP Coaching YouTube page.