When you begin training for a half marathon or 5K, it’s certainly important to track how much you run per day and per week. (And don’t forget to take advantage of early bird pricing to register for the Kaiser Permanente Half Marathon and 5K!)
But it’s also important to pay attention to body alignment while you run, making sure everything is in the right place for the most efficient movement. Here are some tips from sports medicine experts for good running form.
1. Chin Up
To prevent neck and shoulder pain, lift your chin slightly; you’ll be surprised how much more upright your posture feels. Relax your shoulders, shrugging them up to your ears and letting them fall naturally. This upright posture prevents neck and shoulder pain.
2. Chest Out
Engaging your core for support, straighten your shoulders thrust your chest forward. This keeps you from slouching and limits your stride, preventing wasted energy.
3. Straighten Up
Look down; are your knees pointing straight ahead? Letting your knees cave in sets you up for IT band syndrome and knee pain.
4. Thumbs Up
Let your hands swing in front of the body, keeping them relaxed with thumbs pointing up. They have a tendency to flop sideways, but this position is less efficient and streamlined, resulting in wasted energy.
5. Hips in Neutral
Power your running with proper hip postion. Engage your core again, and pull your pelvis in and up. This keeps your hips from tipping forward or back, which decreases your legs’ range of motion.
6. Step to the Middle
With each step, touch down in the middle of your foot. Let your foot roll slightly inward before pushing off the ground.