Many people aren’t aware that running form and how you start a run affect your health. This is especially true for people dealing with plantar fasciitis. When someone with this ailment has improper running form, they might miss out on an active lifestyle due to the pain. Today we’re going over the best form for running with plantar fasciitis along with the most common incorrect running forms.
Running form tips
Lack of warm up
While people talk about the importance of warming up, many beginners still choose not to. Perhaps it’s because when they were younger they never had any injuries but as you get older your likelihood of getting one from not warming up increases greatly. Muscles that are cold and tight are more prone to being pulled, so make sure to warm up before you start your run.
Keep your upper body relaxed
A very common mistake while running is keeping your shoulders up and pinched together. Instead, you want to stay relaxed and loose in the upper body so you don’t restrict your breathing. Also be sure to relax your jaw and keep your arms at a 90 degree angle. Gently swing your arms as you take your strides. This form will help you get adequate air.
Too long of strides
When you’re towards the end of your run, your body is tired and it’s common for your running form to suffer. Overstriding occurs when your strides are longer and you land heel first as your center of gravity is forced on the foot moving forward. This shocks and applies pressure to your leg. It could lead to injuries like shin splints or stress fractures. If you have plantar fasciitis, overstriding may irritate inflamed tissue on your heel. To prevent this, take shorter strides and try to land on your midfoot.
Dragging your feet
Dragging your feet is another common mistake to avoid while running. A possible cause besides fatigue could be that your glutes and hamstrings need to be strengthened to be able to sustain a proper knee lift.
Advice for new runners
Consider the lifespan of your shoes
As nice as it would be to have your running shoes last forever, this is simply not the case. Typically running shoes have a lifespan of 350-500 miles. Having worn down shoes will not provide the proper support your arch needs. Just think about the amount of constant force your feet absorb if the shoes are worn out during a 5 mile run.
Don’t over do it - how to increase your intensity over time
It’s common for new runners to push themselves to their limit and end up sidelined with injuries. Instead, start by finding a comfortable pace and distance. Never increase the distance more than 10% in a given week period.
Mix up terrain
Consistent force from concrete on your heels increases your chance of injury. That’s why it’s best to switch up the terrain. Try running on a grass/dirt trail occasionally instead of on the street by your place. The ground is softer than the concrete, resulting in less strain on your foot.
Maintain hydration to prevent bonking and overexhaustion
When it comes to running, there’s nothing worse than being dehydrated and hot. To prevent heat exhaustion and the debilitating feeling low blood sugar gives you, make sure to always bring enough food and drink with you. In addition make sure to get some calories and water in your system 1-2 hours before your run.
Overall, if you want to get into running just make sure you do proper research to prevent injuries. As you age the body only becomes more fragile, so be sure you listen to these tips on how to not get hurt running so you can spend less time being injured and more time living an active lifestyle!