Running the right way

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Running is a simple sport, but there are a few ways to do it that are better than other ways…Good running technique is important as it will reduce your risk of injury and make it more enjoyable.

Make sure you keep your head straight and avoid looking down at your feet. Looking down will create tension in your neck and shoulders. This will help to prevent you from hunching your shoulders, which should be back and down. Keep them relaxed and avoid tensing them as this restricts breathing, allowing less oxygen to get to the muscles.

It can be difficult to relax your hands but this is an important task; keep your arms at 90 degrees.  Try to swing your arms forward and back, not across your body. The arm movement helps to propel you forward, so swinging them sideways is a waste of energy.

This sounds silly, but if you can lean forward while running. Experts advise that leaning forward a bit while running can reduce heel strike and help you land on the middle of your foot. Trust me this makes all of the difference to your feet! To increase the chances of happy feet, try to keep your hips stable to prevent lower back pain.

Always land with a slight bend in the knee to absorb the impact of running on hard surfaces; your knees should be lifting forwards rather than upwards. Landing on the middle of your foot is the safest way to land for most recreational runners. Avoid striking the ground with your heel or your forefoot first. Your foot should land below your hips – not out in front of you. And don’t hit the ground heavily, instead aim for short light steps. Good running is light and quiet. Whatever your weight, your feet should not slap loudly as they hit the ground. Light steps are more efficient and cause less stress to the body.

Oh and don’t forget to breathe deeply and rhythmically through your nose or mouth. Avoid shallow and quick breaths and take one breath for every two strides.

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