A quick guide to Poor Running Form and Low Back Pain

There are plenty of reasons injury and pain occurs during running and plenty of areas that runners can feel pain so ideally, we should look at ways to prevent or at least minimise these common complaints.

Over the next few weeks I’ll try to post some prevention exercises for the more common injury sites but if there are areas I miss out on let me know and I’ll try address it as soon as I can

First, let’s look at the low back and why we see regular stiffness and pain during and after your running

A common running form mistake I see is the heel lands or impacts the ground in front of the knee.

I’m not going to get into the heel or forefoot debate here but in general when your heel lands in front of the knee you are going to have problems

Have a look at the pic below. Note the heel is ahead of the knee when landing.

Because of this, the body has to react to increased braking force at the foot and ankle complex by

1. Bending at speed at the knee which loads the quads particularly around the knee

2. Lose height at the torso due to increased knee bend

3. the low back arches backwards to reduce the effects of the increased braking force.

If you arch the low back you shorten and tighten the muscles. Do it 180 times per minute and it soon becomes stiff.

Ideally some gait retraining to prevent the heel striking ahead of the knee but if you don’t have access to such a service then strengthening against the effects of the poor landing is a good place to start.

Have a look at the video:

To start any level of resistance can be used and work on 1 set of 20 reps every day or before a run. As you get stronger making sure you use a stronger band will help and increase the sets.

Keep Pain At Bay – Keep Running

Leave a Comment