Having good running form is another way to prevent running injuries. There are many nuances to running form. We’ll discuss the big three. They are Cadence, Posture and Foot placement.
Cadence (Stride Length)
The amateur runner may not put much thought into their running beyond putting one foot in front of the other, however, if you are finding yourself with consistent pain in your shins or recurring lower leg injuries the way you run may be playing a role. New research has demonstrated that when you take a longer stride as you run, the ground reaction force on your legs will be increased. This increased force can lead to more injuries and micro traumas that can lead to chronic injuries and discomfort.
With Cadence think quick feet. A faster stride will reduce the amount of time you spend on the ground and decreased ground-reaction force. This reduces the impact on your body gets hitting the ground.
If you think that this may be affecting your ability to run pain-free, try taking some shorter runs and actively think about taking shorter steps while running. Your legs will have to move faster to maintain the same pace as before. It will take some time to retrain your brain to alter your running pattern, but with some regular training, you should be able to make the transition.
Good posture will help you run with less pain and prevent injuries. Basically good posture will create good running posture. Your head should be over your ribcage and your rib cage should be over you pelvis and pelvis over your feet. This posture will let you run using less energy. If your posture is good it will be easier to fill your lungs with air. Next is to engage your core and build midline stabilization.
Stand with your feet shoulder width apart. This is a very stable position. Now stand with one foot in front (heel to toe). That’s harder right? Standing this way or running this way takes a lot of balance and energy. We’ll call this cross over gait. When we run we should land with our foot under our knee and our knee under our hip. This will support your center of mass better. Think leaning tower of Pisa, the top is not over the bottom making it unstable.
If you are new to running or experienced and need help we are here! Please call the office to set up an appointment.