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terrain training for off-road runners
Trail Running

Terrain Training for Off-Road Runners

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  • £1.40 per book to the UK.
  • £3.42 per book to Ireland and Europe.
  • £4.62 per book to the rest of the World.

About the Guide

80 page black and white A5 booklet focussing on the different running styles and techniques needed to efficiently run over difficult terrain. For both the trail runner and the fell runner the skills learnt here can prove to be invaluable in giving you the competitive edge when trail and fell running over open countryside.

The booklet shows you the necessary techniques and how to alter your running style to contend with running on sand, running through mud, running over heather, running through peat, running in snow, running through deep vegetation, running along narrow tracks, running along woodland trails and running on stony tracks. Also covered is how to cope with obstacles such as rutted ground, stiles and steps.

In the final sections, the booklet shows you how to construct training sessions to improve your techniques and increase your confidence for running over rough ground along with some sample training sessions.

Many sports operate in a single dimensional contact world, for example road runners generally run on flat tarmac. However off-road running in common with sports such as climbing, work in a more multi-dimensional world based on the ever changing surface with which they are in contact with.

Terrain Training for Off-Road Runners' explores the different types of terrain you will encounter, the techniques for adapting your style of running to this environment and the safety aspects needed as well as presenting a number of training patterns to enhance your abilities in this world.

On your next run off-road you will now look at the environment through which you are running with a different perspective.


  1. Introduction
  2. Physical aspects of running over ever changing terrain.
    What happens when you run over a variety of terrain.
    Conditioning the body to cope with the variety of terrain underfoot
  3. Technical aspects of off-road terrain.
    Types of terrain.
    Terrain - damage limitation.
    Route choice.
    Running style.
    Eye to foot co-ordination.
    Mental attitude.
    Safety considerations.
  4. Training techniques for terrain running.
    Simple single exercises.
    Constructing an individual session for terrain training.
    Putting it together into a more complex session.
    How often should you do a terrain specific session.
  5. Practical examples.
  6. Summary.

The Walks

Customer Reviews

What do our customers think about this guide?

Newsletter of the Trail Runners Association Autumn 2008

This book is one of a series of Guides in the course of publication by Trailguides. The author is a UK Athletics coach specialising in endurance running in the fells and mountains.

It's an interesting read for trail runners, particularly those who tend to stray off the trails and out into the open countryside. How many of us understand fully the nature of the flexible running style we should adopt to cope with the enormous variety of conditions underfoot that will be encountered ? This book offers guidance on how we can run more effectively and minimise the risk of injury on a variety of treacherous surfaces. There is also advice on how to strengthen one's legs and ankles to cope with the stresses imposed by varied terrains.

The book should be of particular use to someone starting out on off-road running. It is the distillation of a lifetime's experience. Even an old hand like myself found it helpful to have such good sense so clearly expressed.

Of course I was aware that one should shorten one's stride in slippery conditions and endeavour to achieve level footplants but, having read it, I'm more likely to do it. I'm happy to recommend this book.

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