How is your posture generally? Are you slouching at your desk or laid back on the sofa reading this? There are many reasons to aim for good posture in everyday life but it’s particularly important to aim for good posture when you run.
Having a good running posture will improve your running technique which will make you a more efficient runner- that means running is easier (and we all need that benefit!). It can also reduce your risk of injuries. Joints which are aligned can work in the way they were designed to and stand less chance of causing you problems.
There are some very simple things you can do to improve your running posture. I suggest trying one of these each time you run until you have mastered them all:
- Stand up tall – imagine there is a helium balloon pulling you up to the sky.
- Put your shoulders back and down – allow your lungs to expand.
- Hold your head high – look at the road ahead rather than the ground in front.
- Engage your core muscles – to a certain extent this will happen automatically when you stand up tall and put your shoulders back.
- Tuck your bottom under a bit – don’t overdo it but don’t run with your bum stuck right out.
- Keep your hips strong and level – don’t sink into your hip when your foot hits the ground.
- Lean forwards from your ankles sightly – don’t bend in half from your hips.
- Don’t over stride – land with your foot directly underneath you.
- Swing your arms – forward and back, at your side and close to your body.
Give these a go and see how it feels. If you’re struggling with recurrent injuries, your running posture and gait could be to blame. See a running physiotherapist for an assessment and a personalised plan.
These tips are from my book Run Well: Essential health questions and answers for runners. Published by Bloomsbury and available to buy now. It’s packed with tips and advice for every level of runner. All your common running and health questions answered in one place.
Featured image: Horst von Bohlen