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The Most Ideal Way to Hold Your Arms While Running

Running Tip: Mind Your Arms


I have noticed that a lot of people hold their arms — known as arm carriage — differently when running. While some hold their arms low and to the side, others cross them in front of their body, so it occurred to me that it might be a good idea to share a technique that I have learned (and found) to be the most beneficial to my runs.

Here's the deal: Many runners hold their arms too high, which often results in neck and upper back pain. Furthermore, swinging your arms across the body wastes energy that you need to keep running. The most ideal way to hold your arms is so that your thumbs just barely brush below your hipbones (the top of your pelvis) with your palms facing in with each step. Focus on pumping your elbows backward and forward. In other words, do not cross your arms across your body. I like to think of it this way: Swing your arms in the direction you are traveling.

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