Running form part 4 of 10: Shoulder Position/Tension

Our running form priority list is:
1. Foot strike
2. Cadence
3. Breathing pattern
4. Shoulder position/tension
5. Lean/ Fall
6. Head position
7. Arm position/swing
8. Hip position
9. Hand tension
10. Leg return

Shoulder Position/Tension

What is shoulder tension?

Shoulder tension is the tension the builds up in our shoulders as they raise, tighten and lift upwards over the duration of a run, in particularly when we are fatiguing.



The Tech:

Why does Shoulder position matter?

Shoulder position is important because shoulder tension can;

-restrict movement/add resistance to arm swing

-cause shoulder and neck pain

-be a contributing factor to injury and fatigue

-contribute to further tension in other areas

-can contribute to a hunched form, effecting our oxygen intake and ability to breath efficiently

How can we ensure correct Shoulder position?

Your shoulders should have a small slight forward roll, hanging low and loose.

Keep your shoulders relaxed and hanging even so they are parallel to the ground.

Avoid bringing your shoulder blades together as this can contribute to shoulder tension.

Aim to be self aware of the way your shoulders feel during your runs. If your shoulders rise toward your ears or tense up during your run, drop your arms by your sides so they hang on their own weight, roll your shoulders and gently shake your arms until you feel the tension release. Prior to shaking your arms out, lifting your arms up and completing  steady shoulder rotations may also help release shoulder tension. Get into the habit of doing this several times during your run.


The Videos: 

In run shoulder tension release techniques

Shoulder strength and mobility exercises

nokkon Ambassador feedback:

Chris Wright: “I try and keep my shoulders low and loose but when I push myself in distance or pace, I can still feel them ride and tighten up. If i don’t release I can feel the tension growing into my neck. I make sure I regularly drop my arms and “reset” my form. This gives me a chance to rotate my shoulders, let them hang, shake them out and reset to good running form. If i am using a watch or app that gives me KM updates, I use this as a reminder to reset my form and release shoulder tension on every km.”

Stay tuned for our next Running Form blog on Lean/Fall.



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