There are numerous articles available to help you fix your running form, but what about the habits you should avoid? Improvement does not always stem from the addition of work – sometimes all it takes is the avoidance of bad habits. Listed below are ways you are sabotaging your running in your daily life.
Running with music can be a great distraction (so long as it is not too great of a distraction and puts your safety at risk), but the modern conveniences we have developed for hands free running may be hurting our running form. Take a closer look the next time you see someone running with his or her iPhone strapped to a bicep. Are both arms carried the same way? In reality, one part of the body is likely compensating for the additional weight.
Sitting with Crossed Legs
Crossing your legs can easily throw your hips out of alignment, especially if done often. Misalignment in the hips then leads to the favoring of one leg, which leads to inefficiencies or even injury. Avoid keeping your legs crossed, especially if you cross them at the knee.
Sitting All Day
Have you heard that sitting is the new smoking? Not only is being sedentary bad for your health, but it is bad for your running. When we sit, we ignore important factors, such as posture, and we also disrupt the normal activity of important muscle groups, such as our glutes. Long periods of sitting can cause these muscles to inactivate which ultimately destroys our form.
Wearing Flip Flops
Watch a person walking who is wearing flip flops, and now watch a person walking who is wearing running shoes. Notice that the person with flip flops likely is not moving with great form, and is also having to scrunch his or her toes to keep from losing the shoe. Your body remembers repetitive movements, and wearing flip flops or other clog-type shoes can cause confusion from the neuromuscular perspective.
Carrying a Heavy Purse
If your purse weighs more than a few pounds and you carry it on one shoulder, you may be hurting the alignment of your shoulders, back, and hips. Clean out your purse and aim to only carry essential items, such as wallet, ID, and phone. If it is necessary that you carry more, consider a backpack or other ergonomically designed bag.
Sitting on a Wallet in your Back Pocket
When you sit down and you have a wallet in the back pocket of your pants your pelvis will be tilted to one side. Over time this incongruity will lead to major alignment issues that affect your legs, back, and shoulders. Consider carrying a money clip instead.
Your Dog Pulls the Leash During Walks
If your dog is constantly pulling you during walks, the side of your body that you hold the leash with will continually be out of alignment. Train your dog to heel and save your shoulder from the strain.
Let us know if you know of other bad habits that affect your running form. Leave a comment below or visit us on Facebook.