Running is one of the most common ways to exercise globally. Unlike basketball or ice hockey, running doesn’t involve any requisite skills, making it suitable for anyone looking to get moving and improve their fitness. However, adopting the proper running form can reduce injury risk, improve endurance, and better motor patterning and muscle recruitment.
Before you try and master your form, it can be helpful to record yourself running so you can understand what your natural gait is like. Now, using the advice we are about to cover, pinpoint what you need to work on.
1. Stand tall
Many people hunch over when they run, but this can affect balance. Try to stack your spine: head directly above shoulders, spine straight, body open.
2. Arms at 90-degrees
Running is a whole body movement – that means your arms are also working to propel you forward! You might have wondered what to do with your arms when running. Elbows bent at a 90-degree angle, hands relaxed and arms swinging helps to optimize overall energy expenditure.
3. Core and hips
Keep your core tight and hips square. With the motion of lower and upper limb movement, keeping your midline stable is essential for posture and balance.
4. Natural strides
Your feet should land about hip-width apart – there is no need to actively overextend your stride. In terms of proper foot strike, this depends on your anatomy, running shoes, and type of run you are performing e.g. sprint or marathon. However, in all cases, it’s important to avoid feet rolling inwards or outwards.
We hope this has helped give you an insight into proper running form. Good luck!