4 Common Running Mistakes you MUST Avoid

27 January, 2017

By Owain Evans, Doctor of Chiropractic


So how do you run?

Are you swift and elegant like a gazelle?

Or do you run like Phoebe from Friends?

There are 7 common running errors

Did you know there are 7 very common Running errors, and that in our experience most people exhibit one or more of these in their running style. Running in a less than ideal way increases impact on the joints and strain on the muscles. This in turn can lead to injury.

So Let’s discuss 4 of the 7 commonest running errors.


Overstriding is one of the main causes of injury in runners. It is described as landing with your foot too far ahead of your centre of gravity, so under your hips. If your foot hits the ground in front of you then the shock force that impacts the knee is greater and increases your injury rate. One of the easiest ways to solve this is by increasing your cadence (steps per minute). You should ideally take 85-90 steps per minute on each foot. Use a metronome set at 170-190 bpm and try to land alternating feet on each beat. You may be shocked by the difference.

Leaning from the Waist & Excessive Lordosis

Another common error is to run with an arched lower back. it may seem strange to lean forward while running, but think about it – it makes sense. If you want to move forward then you should lean into that direction to utilise the effect of gravity to help you “freefall” in a forward direction. Lean slightly forward from the ankles, not from the waist. notice how your speed increases with ease.

Improper use of the Arms

Arm swing if often neglected but BOY do people swing their arms in strange ways. The arms work to counterbalance the hip motion. the arms should not swing across the midline or even come near! They should swing alongside the body and go forwards and backwards. Elbows bent  90-120 degrees, swing from the shoulders and relax the rest of the body. Improper arm swing can be a reflection of a hip problem (see a chiropractor for this).

Too much Vertical Motion

when running your head should barely move, it’s just wasted energy. If you are bobbing up and down then you are increasing the ground impact forces. try using a mirror in front of a treadmill to watch yourself. imagine running with a ceiling 2 inches above your head to correct this.


There are a few other things that we look for when we do a running analysis here at Backspace. Book a session with Mark our Doctor of Chiropractic and Running Analyst by clicking on this link


Alternatively call 0203 151 2345 or email