Damian Stoy is a certified Chi Running instructor. As founder of Wholistic Running, he incorporates Chi Running principles with his own advanced focuses he has learned as an accomplished ultra marathon runner, respected coach and biomechanics specialist.
Chi Running has greatly enhanced my running and has helped countless other runners around the world. Being free of injuries, running with more joy, using less effort and performing better are just some of the many benefits of what I teach here at Wholistic Running.
Let me share my story how Chi Running has helped me overcome chronic running injuries and stay injury-free for the past 8 years even as an accomplished ultra marathon runner (see my race results). I absolutely love running and I have Chi Running to thank for this!
In the past I have suffered from many chronic running injuries including runners knee, shin splints and IT band issues. The worst of it began 10 years ago when I developed severe patellar tendonitis in both of my knees from running. I was in pain 24 hours a day and many days I could barely walk, laying in bed much of the time. This lasted for over two years! I saw some of the best physical therapists, doctors and alternative therapists in New England. Nothing helped.
I was even told by several doctors and physical therapists that I would never be able to run again.
Since finding Chi Running, I’ve run over twenty mountainous 50 mile races, a few 100 milers and all of this staying injury-free for the past 8 years. How? Chi Running!
I found out about Chi Running and immediately devoured the book in one sitting. I quickly set out to try this technique which sounded too good to be true. Skeptical, I went for my fourth run in 2.5 years because of being injured. Those few previous runs were only 15 minutes and left me in excruciating pain and hobbling for days. But this run was different. I was focusing on my technique so intensely that when I got home, I realized I ran for over 45 minutes. And I wasn’t in excruciating pain. In fact, I had very little pain.
I started ‘Chi Running’ 3-4 days a week focusing on my running technique and I slowly healed. Yoga helped speed up the healing process and Chi Running allowed me to run with less impact. Now 8 years later, I teach the technique which helped me rediscover my passion for running and has allowed me to stay injury free since my days of chronic injuries and being told that running causes injuries and to “never run again”.
I’m also passionate about Chi Running because of how it greatly benefits performance. I’m an accomplished ultrarunner because of the Chi Running technique and mental focuses. Some runners tell me that the only way to run faster is to train harder. They also say you have to train faster, go to the track and do complex workouts and that is the only way to get better. What if this wasn’t true? For me, it’s all about running smarter not harder. I run 3-4 days a week (about 40 miles) with no ‘speed work’ but can still run far and fast because I have a very efficient technique. To run faster, I relax more. Every other sport focuses on technique, why would running be any different?
Some say I’m just naturally gifted. Well, if being a runner with chronic injuries is naturally gifted, then there are many naturally gifted runners. Also, in my opinion, most humans are in fact naturally gifted runners, for we are born to run. We ‘forget’ how to run correctly. Fortunately we can relearn how to run the way we were designed with Chi Running. I’m also told “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. Well, all I can say to that is over 70% of all runners are injured every year.
I’ve been injury free for over 8 years, overcoming many chronic injuries with the help of Chi Running.
Finally, I owe much of my joy, love and passion for running to Chi Running. Because of Chi Running, I get a ‘runners high’ just about every run I go on. Running is a moving meditation that benefits my whole life and I am a deeply happy and successful person because of this. I hope you get to experience the benefits of Chi Running as well. Please practice with no expectations, a curious mind and an open heart. It takes lots of practice, patience and determination but the benefits are well worth it!
- Damian offers Online Video Analysis
- Would you like running to be easier and more enjoyable?
- Barefoot Running and Minimalist Shoes
- Yoga and Running
- Why I love Running
- Why a Focus on Running Form?
- Reduce fatigue, race faster and perform better
- March Race Report: Community, support, faith and losing my Self
- Bridger Ridge Barefoot Run
- Must Read Books for Runners
- Running and Yoga Retreats