My research work takes an anthropological view of a runner. My belief is that if we move the way a human is designed to move that will make us a good athlete and to maximise our dynamic potential, we must take that human movement and turn it into human performance.
Ten years of research has convinced me that much of our dynamic movement is heavily influenced by our everyday movement and the environment we live in. Life in the western world has little synergy with the world we would have interacted with as we evolved. So in my quest for natural human movement I spend much of my time in extreme environments studying the movement and perception of tribes and indigenous people.
These environments include desert, jungle, mountain and arctic conditions on 6 continents. As a contrast and compare for my research I also work with athletes in these environments to understand their physical and mental adaptations needed for these new and hostile environments.
This work is invaluable in retracing the amazing gifts we acquired as we evolved. Leaving behind a muscle based strategy and exchanging it for a far more efficient approach, founded on our fascial system. Our fascial system is responsible for our elastic recoil, elastic propulsion and the sea of tension that our skeleton floats in.
Changing a runners perception of their movement to one of beingsynergistic, fluid, connected and elastic will go a long way to changing the physical movement and results in more efficient loading and an increase inperformance.
This is particularly useful for working with athletes on their mental and physical approach to taking on challenges in extreme environments.
My research journey continues and what drives and excites me is that just around the next corner could be one of those amazing moments where you learn something that changes your thoughts forever.