Running Form: Arm Swing

When I first started running, I always cringed whenever I’d see a picture or video of myself running.  I always joked that I ran more like a football player with my elbow swinging wide out to the sides.  My husband affectionately called this my “pirate arm”.  Over the years, I have had to work hard at correcting this improper arm swing.   So what is proper arm swing?  When running, your arms should be bent at roughly 90 degrees.  Slightly more or less is okay. Your hands should be lightly clasped and when your arm swings, your hands should brush between your lowest rib and your waistband.  Your arms should not cross midline across your body.  The swinging action itself is front to back and relaxed. Any abnormal swinging (crossing the body, elbows wide, shoulders high) can negatively impact your mechanics.  One of the best ways to see what your arm swing is like is to look at recent race photos.  They often illuminate any arm swing issues.  

Coach K