As my training programme intensifies I have started to notice new pains and discomforts. One ache that keeps recurring is in my back. I’ve always had really bad posture – I can’t help it I just like slouching – but running has highlighted just how bad.
I know that it is important to stay upright when running so my muscles can distribute the impact and absorb the shock of my feet repetitively hitting the ground. So I’m writing a few running rules to myself here to try to help reduce my back pain. (You can use them too.)
1. Think posture: I have recently discovered that pushing my chest forward can be damaging to my back, so I need to stop daydreaming when I run and pay attention. It is better to have relaxed shoulders so my chest is not restricted and breathing is easy. Hunched up shoulders aren’t very aerodynamic after all!
2. Tall and lean: If I keep my back tall with a slight forward lean, so my body forms a straight line it also prevents any pains later in the day.
3. Right-angle arms: Big arm movements won’t do me any favours; in fact they will do the opposite. It is better to have a 90 degree angle in my arms so they are focused forward throughout my run.
4. Hip rolls: Hip movement is important for me and keeping them underneath me is crucial. It prevents my bum from sticking out – which is bad posture – and helps me to keep my back tall.
5. Heads up: Allowing my head to drop when running is only going to slow me down and put an extra strain on my back. So, eyes forward and head up when running!
That sounds easy…I just need to remember it all when I run.
Do let me know if you have any handy hints and tips.