3 Advanced Running Drills to Improve Your Performance

jerome clavel

If you want to keep improving as a runner you’ve got to switch up your training from time to time. Jerome Clavel says that if you’ve hit a plateau when it comes to endurance or speed, take time to work through these three easy drills and see how they help on the next big run.

Dynamic running drills help reinforce healthy movements and train your muscles to perform at optimal output. Over time, these three exercises will teach you better coordination, greater agility, and improved balance. Be sure to perform these drills before a run as part of your warm-up routine.

If you are ready to get started, let’s dive in!

Butt Kick Drills

Butt kicks help stretch your quadriceps and hip flexors while optimizing your hamstrings. Over time, they’ll help strengthen your glutes and improve how high you lift your legs while running. To perform a butt kick:

  1. Stand up straight with your feet slightly wider than your hips and face forward.
  2. Lift one foot off the floor and raise it to your glutes while raising the opposite hand as if running.
  3. Lower down and then repeat on the other side.

Start slowly and then build to a full run to increase your cardio performance.

A-Skip Drills

A-skip drills help teach proper foot placement and warm up your knees before a big run. Over time, A-skip drills will help you develop better posture and arm-to-leg coordination. Here’s how you can perform an A-skip drill:

  1. Stand up straight with your feet slightly wider than your hips and face forward.
  2. Lift one knee to hip height while simultaneously skipping on the ball of your opposite foot. This should propel you slightly forward.
  3. Lift the opposite arm as you skip forward as if running.
  4. Lower down and then repeat on the other side, making sure to skip forward with each alternating movement.

It can take practice to get this motion down perfectly. We recommend checking out this video for a clear demonstration.

jerome clavel

Fast Feet Drills

Practicing fast feet drills helps boost your cadence while also strengthening your coordination. Over time, you’ll develop better foot placement and stronger calves. Perform a fast feet drill by following these steps:

  1. Stand up straight with your feet slightly wider than your hips and face forward.
  2. Lift one foot roughly 6 inches off the ground while simultaneously raising your opposite arm as if running.
  3. Quickly alternate between sides, simulating a fast run.
  4. Remain in place while speedily jogging.

Continue this exercise for at least one minute to maximize its benefits. You should feel the burn in your calves and be careful to not hurt your ankles.


Running drills can look silly, especially if you run in public but don’t let your pride get in the way of your training. Take time to properly warm up with these three advanced running drills and you’ll soon see the difference. You’ll soon run stronger, faster, and longer than before. Be sure to follow the steps closely to prevent injury and always stretch after a long run.

Jerome Clavel
Jerome Clavel formerly of Abbott, writes about developments in medical devices and imaging.