Run Assessment: How do you run?

How do you run? We’re talking about your stride, your arm movements, how you land, what your hips are doing, etc. Each of us have our own individual running style and form (remember that episode of Friends where Rachel is embarrassed to run with Phoebe?).

Therapydia invited bRUNch Running to their Denver clinic to take a peek at co-founder, Alex Weissner’s running form. She met with Casey McNitt, MSPT for an inside look at running form and how she could improve and become a better runner. Therapydia is a national network of Physical Therapy clinics that focuses ongoing wellness programs like yoga, pilates, and TRX. Build strength and flexibility and you will become a better athlete, kind of mindset.

McNitt defines good running form as “relaxed and efficient”. Working from head to toe: a runner’s trunk should be slightly leaning forward, providing good stability through the hips and pelvis, and contact between ground and foot.

One of the main focuses of a running assessment is the gait analysis of a runner. A running gait analysis provides insight on how an individual runs by a recording a runner from multiple views and angles. This analysis can help spot any dysfunction and muscle weakness a runner may have and findings can correlate to current injuries, efficiency, performance, and injury prevention.  

Alex jumped on the treadmill and ran while McNitt recorded her run on an iPad. Afterwards, Alex and McNitt sat down and took a closer look at Alex’s running performance. Overall, Alex’s analysis was pretty good but reaffirmed a few things she already knew. Her hips drop on her left side while she runs which indicated weak glutes and also contributed to her left knee to turn in.

After the analysis McNitt showed Alex several exercises to help strengthen some of her weaknesses. She’s added these exercises to her post-run training routine three times a week to become a more conscious runner.

McNitt’s top three tips for runners:

1. Lean slightly forward

2. Land softly on your whole foot and with a slightly bent knee

3. Work to increase cadence (steps per minute) by 5 to 10 percent from your initial running analysis with the goal of 175 to 180 steps per minute

Make sure to head over to our Instagram account where we will share some photos from Alex’s analysis and the physical therapy exercises.