Running specific isometrics exercises are endorsed and progressed by High Performance Sport Scientist, Alex Natera. These isometric exercises are a type of training method used to develop strength from specific joint angles from the ankle, knee and hip. Several positive strength adaptations can occur when we apply a high load to muscles and tendons, especially when we apply force at the same angle that our major joints are at when we are running. 

These isometric holds are mostly done with a Smith Machine, Safety Bar or a Barbell.

3 main types of Run Specific Isometrics 

  • Ankle Isometric
  • Knee Isometric 
  • Hip Isometric 


The key points to these 3 isometric exercises, are that they need to be within 5 degrees of the same joint angle as they are when we run. 

Example; our knee holding load at 40-45 degree joint angle, with our heel underneath our hip. This is the same position our knee would be in if we were running.  


Load Recommendations/Aims

Ankle Hold  – 1.5 – 2 x Bodyweight 

Knee Hold – 2 – 3 x Bodyweight 

Hip Hold  – 1.25 – 1.5 x System weight (33% of Bodyweight)


Duration, Reps and Sets Recommendations/Aims

All 3 holds:

  • Duration 3 – 10s
  • Reps 3 – 5 
  • Sets 3 – 5

If you are interested in incorporating some isometric exercises into your routine, book in with our strength and conditioning coach for a personalised program to improve your running strength.

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