Run properly and more efficiently by maintaining a short stride with the knees in alignment, pushing up and off of the ground and maintaining bent elbows with relaxed hands while running. Focus on your posture when running up and down both hills and flat surfaces.
- Maintain a short, quick stride
As you run, your stride should allow the middle of the foot to land first. Avoid reaching out with your foot and lengthening the stride. This is known as over-striding and may cause injury. As the foot falls, the hip, knee and ankle should be in alignment for proper shock absorption. Take care when running downhill to maintain your stride, and avoid slapping your foot forward onto the pavement.
- Push up and off of the ground
During running, the planted foot holds your weight as the rest of the body moves forward. Focus on pushing off of the pavement behind you as you run. When running up hill, it should feel as though you are springing from the toes to reach the summit.
- Maintain bent elbows and relaxed hands
The elbows should be kept close to the body and held at a 90 degree angle. Keep your hands relaxed and below chest level. This neutralizes the upper body, allowing your lower body to do the work. Swinging your arms across the body or reaching forward with the arms may alter your gait and result in injury.