If we want to improve running technique, it is important that we take a look at running form and make the necessary adjustments and improvements. This will help reduce the chance of injury, increase speed and increase efficiency.
Our way of running plays a vital role in the many health benefits of running. It allows us to run longer distances at a higher intensity with less pain and discomfort. There are specific form techniques to follow that may differ slightly due to variations in body mechanics. You have to take into account the distance and speed at which you want to run, as well as any relevant injuries or physical areas of concern.
ways to run
There are some suggestions for improving running technique to increase running economy, improve performance, and reduce risk of injury.
Jogging may be slower paced than running, but it still has a variety of health benefits. Some tips to maximize jogging workouts are:
- While jogging, maintain good posture, tighten your abdomen, and look straight ahead.
- Avoid tilting your head down and letting your shoulders droop.
- Expand the chest and keep it raised while we bring the shoulders down and back.
- Keep your hands loose and use a relaxed arm swing. Avoid crossing your arms in front of your body.
- To avoid lower body injury, use a midfoot strike and avoid hitting the ground with your heel. This allows the foot to land directly below the hip while pushing the body forward. A heel strike can cause the leg to slow down and stress the knees.
The high-intensity action of sprinting requires a lot of muscular activation and explosive force as we develop a powerful stride. It is recommended to keep these tips in mind:
- Lean slightly forward from the waist while activating the abdomen.
- Lift the chest, soften the shoulders and move them away from the ears.
- Use short, quick steps to conserve energy.
- To reduce the chance of injury, we will land softly and quietly with minimal impact.
- We’ll use a forefoot strike and drive forward from the toes. With each step, we will lift the thigh so that it is parallel to the ground.
- We’ll bend our elbows at a 90-degree angle and bring them straight forward and back, using an exaggerated motion and moving them through a wider range of motion than when jogging.
- We will raise our hands up to the height of the chin and back, towards the lower part of the back.
- We will avoid turning the torso and crossing the arms along the midline of the body.
on a tape
Running on a treadmill or treadmill is an option if we want to reduce the impact on the joints and prevent overuse injuries. A treadmill allows us to run at a smooth and constant pace without obstacles or necessary stops. This allows us to focus solely on running technique. Some tips are:
- Pull your shoulders back and tighten your abdomen as you lean slightly forward.
- Keep your spine upright. We will keep the shoulders directly over the hips.
- We will relax our arms, look straight ahead and avoid looking down or at the screen.
- We will use a short step and take small steps.
- Running on a treadmill will force you to shorten your strides, as taking too many strides will cause you to kick the front of the treadmill.
- Unless we have problems with balance, we will avoid holding on to the handles while running.
Techniques to improve form
The best way to improve running technique is to do key exercises to lengthen and strengthen the muscles involved in running:
- Include core exercises, such as glute bridges and side planks, to improve strength, balance, and stability while reducing the chance of injury and overuse.
- To protect the knees from injury, strike the foot directly below the knee rather than in front of it, which can also be the result of overstriding. This is especially important when running downhill.
- Keep a tall and straight spine, and stretch it up to the crown. Do head and neck exercises to build the strength needed to maintain good posture and look straight ahead.
- Coordinate the breath to align it with the rhythm of the feet. This helps maintain a relaxed posture, reduce muscle tension, and use energy efficiently.
- Bend your elbows at a 90-degree angle and move your arms from your shoulders back and forth while keeping your hands relaxed.
- We will avoid crossing the arms over the torso or twisting the upper part of the body.
- We will keep our hands close to the waist. We will try to keep our hands at waist level, just where they could lightly brush the hip. The arms should be bent at a 90 degree angle. Some beginners tend to raise their hands to chest height, especially when they get tired.
- We will slightly tilt the chest forward to help propel the body forward.
Tips to avoid injuries
Finding good running technique can also help prevent injury while working on posture. Improving mobility and flexibility in the hips and ankles is recommended to reduce lower back and knee injuries.
Also, it is interesting to increase the number of steps per minute to put less stress on the body. Gradually increasing the duration, intensity and frequency of your runs will improve your running technique. But, you need to increase your speed and mileage over time.
It is best to take a break for an adequate period of time if you have muscle pain or injuries, especially if they are recurring or long lasting. We will consult a physical therapist if we have any injuries. Professionals can treat the injury, identify the cause, and help us make the necessary corrections to prevent it from happening again.
In addition, it is very important to wear appropriate running shoes. We will avoid shoes that are too padded and we will try to change them frequently (normally at 500 km).