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Running technique is an incredibly important part of your performance. If you don't spend time thinking about your movement patterns and gait and working to make it as effective as possible, you are missing out on a simple way to run faster or farther without more physiological training. Understanding and applying the science of technique will help you maximize your efficiency on the road and improve your performance.
For some, running injuries are either minor or nonexistent; for others, it seems like we're constantly battling one nagging pain after another. As with everything, the key to recovering from injury is to always remember that any injury has a cause (wrong shoes, sudden change in training volume or intensity, etc.) and until that cause is corrected, treatment (rest, drugs, etc.) will not be effective.
Here are some very straightforward lessons on the importance of biomechanics. Remember to keep these suggestions in mind:
- Lead with your hips.
- Keep your body tall, with your head up and avoid leaning forward.
- Strike down with your heel and roll off of your toes in a flowing motion.
- Don't clench. Clenching (hands, arms, eyes) transfers stress to other part of the body and makes running in comfort difficult.
- Avoid swinging your arms excessively, lifting your knees upward, etc. These type of movements waste energy and make running a challenge.