If you have an 'odd' natural gait should you try to change it?...

I've just seen some footage of me during the 1/2 marathon I did yesterday (at 5.5miles and at 13) I have a bit of a 'funny run' I seem to really wiggly my hips and bum, but at the top my shoulders are moving the same. I run with quite a mobile mid section, that twists etc.

Today the only ill effects of the run are being a little stiff, but mainly in my hips

So....my question is....is you have a less than perfect running gait should you try to change it?... or just stick with what comes naturally?....


  • I think you can always improve your running and technique in general. Improving my core has recent helped me greatly.
  • ^^ what he said, doing core training and working on your posture will help you maintain at least the same gait, as you fatigue your gait gets sloppy, but a strong core and posture will help reduce that.
  • urgh! I hope I never see video footage of myself running - that would scare the horses!  

    I'm no expert, but would suggest that you need to work with the way you run and try to make it more efficient, rather than to actually change it. If there's lots of excess movement, then that will be wasteing energy unecessarily. Reducing that movement, while still feeling comfortable, will obviously help.

    I've had loads of good input on this since I've joined a club and now run with a lot less shoulder roll - still room for improvement though.

  • I always seem to think that if the way you are running is working for you and you are not having problems with injuries why change it....................

    How many people do you think tried to change Michael Johnson,  Paula Radcliffe or Haile's style of running as they all run very strangely.worked for them.........

    core exercises are never a bad thing to do irrespective of your running style or injuries...........

    Good luckimage

  • Cholobo, Wiggly hips/bum when you run are often a sign of weak core.  Your core stabilises your pelvis when you run and whilst you may not have problems now you could be stirring up trouble for the future.

    I'll tell you my experience.  I've been running 35 years - had the odd injury but nothing major.  3 years ago I injured my back (I swallowed a fly whilst out running and coughed involuntarily and popped a disc!)  I couldn't run for about a month - then came back gradually.  But over the next 3 years I ALWAYS had lower back pain (which wasn't relieved by not running - I had a stress fracture 18 months ago and didn't run for 10 weeks and the back pain did not resolve) until 6 months ago I just stopped running.  Not because the usual pain was any worse but because I was sick of it and phsycologically I'd just had enough I think.  After 3 weeks not running I went to a physio as a last ditch attempt to sort my back out - I'd seen physios, osteopaths, chiropraters and podiatrists before but they'd never got to the root of my problem.

    The new physio took a long history of what I'd done and did several tests (physical ones) to see what was happening to me.  He explained that when I'd popped my disc, what happens is, when you really hurt yourself - all the supporting muscles to the injured area turn off as well.  I started running again probably too soon and probably adopted a different running style to relieve my back.  Because of this my core never actually turned on again - it should do naturally after injury, as you heal.  Because I could run, albeit in a bit of pain it never occured to me how weak my core was - I couldn't isolate my trans abs at all, I didn't know how to turn them on anymore.  With no core my pelvis was destabilised and my glutes/hip flexors took up the job but this left them constantly tight which then put stress on my lower back/sacro-illiac joints and caused the pain.

    My point is this - you may not have problems now but if you could be treading a knife edge!  If you injure yourself elsewhere there will be a pay-out!  And as Seren and others have said says - core is key to injury free running.  You may not even realise you are weak - I didn't !  I am well on the mend now after some pretty brutal gym routines led by my physio. 

    The thing that rang a bell about your post was your description of your running style - I didn't realise I ran like that until my physio told me - well, what he actually said was - "you look like a bag of spanners". I said I wiggled "because I was a girl"..... and he said "no, you wiggle because you're weak".  Weak?? I run mountain marathons, ultras and fell races..... how could I be weak?  He was right though and though we trade insults on a weekly basis I know that without his help I would probably have given up.  

  • There's nowt wrong with a wiggly bum.

    <pulls up the sofa, opens a tinnie>

    Now, if you'd like to wiggle and sashay across the thread a few times, the panel of experts can deliver a considered opinion ... <slurp>

  • LOL Muttley image - I'll go fetch my stillettos......
  • MY bum wobbles more than it wigglesimage
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