Form. Form. Form. Running form is soooo incredibly important!! I cannot emphasize this enough! A lot of running pains occur because of improper form! Whenever I run, I keep a mental checklist of what my body should be doing. Sometimes I slip, especially when I’m tired, and my body lets me know if I’m not running properly. Yes, knee pain, I feel you, I’m heel striking again aren’t I?
Keeping proper form is not complicated, but sometimes it doesn’t come naturally. My natural tendency is to over stride and heel strike. This is a waste of energy, puts the brakes on every step, and is really hard on the knees. I had to train myself to have a mid foot strike. It was so awkward at first, but with lots of focus, it’s now second nature. I even bought special shoes that encourage a mid foot strike. They are a zero drop shoe, and I cannot recommend them enough! They are wonderful!
Basics Of Proper Form
- Your body should be relaxed. Don’t waste energy by clenching your fists and hunching your shoulders. Breathe. Relax. Let go of the tension.
- Strive for a mid foot strike, this helps with runners knee and is more efficient. Run with quick and light feet to avoid shin splints. You should barely hear your feet as they strike the ground.
- Run with your best posture, stick out your chest, look forward, and smile!
- Your arms should be relaxed, elbows at about a 90 degree angle, and your hands should not cross the mid line of your body, but you should have some twist.
Check out these videos for some more tips on running form
Drills to improve your form here!
Analyze Your Form
One of the best things you can do to improve your running is to have someone analyze your form. You can even video yourself on a treadmill and analyze it yourself. Seriously, there are lots of little things that you just can’t see or tell if you’re doing until you watch it on video. Is your elbow crossing the mid line in the back? How is your hip stability? Do you have hip drop? Is your knee slightly turned in? Where is your foot striking? Do you pronate?
Proper running mechanics allows you to run with more efficiency, less pain, and better performance overall.
Check this out for tips on what to eat while running.
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