written By Meriel Davis, chiropractor at Back 2 Balance chiropractic clinic in Hove. Mel specialises in working on sports injuries and even helps out at the Master’s athletics championships several times a year.
Having a good running technique this will make you far more efficient at running, therefore expending less energy, as well as helping to reduce the risk of further injury.
Here are my 3 top tips for improving your running technique……
1) Good posture. Making sure you’re not continuing that rounded posture brought on my a day at the office is important for your running efficiency. Focus on keeping your shoulders back, arms relaxed and head upright looking straight ahead.
2) Foot/leg posture. Imagine your foot being split into 3. The heal end is the hind foot. The middle bit with the arch is the forefoot and the ball of the foot is the forefoot. Forefoot running is said to be far more efficient as this helps use your legs muscles in a way that propels your body even further…thus making you faster and more efficient. Imaging if you were to run along the seafront in just barefeet…you would actually become a natural forefoot runner anyway as heal striking would hurt you without the cushioning effect of trainers. Forefoot running is more natural to the human frame and therefor will leave the runner less prone to injury. However transitioning from heal striking to forefoot running can take up to a year and in the short term may give the runner injuries. Best to get checked out by your chiropractor :-).
Remember, however, it’s important to not over stride. Your foot should not be visibly landing past your knee otherwise this creates a breaking affect and again can lead to injury. Concentrate more on the back foot propelling you forward. Try to land lightly (as if you’re trying to sneak up on someone..that’s what I always do when I’m sprinting).
3) Breathing. Make sure you’re fully using the whole of your lungs by making long deep breaths. Feel your belly coming out. This is diaphragmatic breathing and is the most efficient way of getting air into your lungs and therefore more oxygen from the air goes to your muscles for running faster :-).
If you find yourself consistently being injured with running then it is of course beneficial to get your mechanics checked out. There may be something in your frame alignment that needs correcting or you may be overactivating some muscle groups whilst underactivating others.
Have you got any problems with running? Are you frequently injured? do you want to know more? Please comment below and Mel will happily answer any of your questions.