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Tuesday, July 24, 2012

"On the Run" Short Film about Lydiard and Running in New Zealand 1979

Click on this image to view the movie

This film showcases legendary running coach Arthur Lydiard's training methods through the example of his acolytes, including reigning Olympic 1,500m champ John Walker. 'Arthur's boys' (Snell, Halberg, Magee) scored attention by winning unheralded medals (two golds and a bronze) at the 1960 Rome Olympics. Lydiard later led the 'flying Finns' to similar success. His method revolves around building stamina to complement speed, and was influential in popularising jogging globally. Beautifully filmed, a doco highlight is Jack Foster's exhilarating scree slope descent.

  • If my memory serves me right, the "Cave Man" runner in the opening scene is my team mate of the time, Gary Wilby, of the Victoria University Harrier Club.  Another "Gary", of course!  He was, and still is, very, very hairy.
  • What you see in the movie is a succession of incredibly well-conditioned male and female athletes.  Look closely at their wonderful muscle development.  There are no over-trained and under-nourished athletes to be seen.  They trained to a system and ate well.  And watch them run with great efficiency!  
  • This is back in the days when New Zealand really did inspire a sense of awe and disbelief in the running world.  I am getting overwhelmed with nostalgia.
  • Great to see a few shots of my sister, Lorraine, although a wee bit off the pace in the race sequences.
  • Look at the strength these athletes have in their legs.  There is not a hint of a flat-footed runner among them.  Look at the terrain they are training on - no manicured trails to be seen.  Agile!
  • Take special note at about the 6 minute mark.  There is demonstrated a largely forgotten pair of running drills - Hill-springing and hill-bounding.  And look at the muscles on the female runner demonstrating the drills.  Every runner, serious and recreational, should be practicing these drills as part of their weekly training.  I am in the process of getting back into running and several minutes of hill-springing are part and parcel of just about every run around the block.

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The advice in these articles is given freely without promise or obligation.  Its all about giving you and your family the tools and information to take control of your health and fitness.

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