Downhill Running – Head for the Hills

For runners, the uphill battle may seem more difficult on your body than the downward decent. But what most don’t realize is that downhill running actually requires the use of more diverse muscle groups.

Unlike weight lifting and focusing on separate muscle groups to gain strength and power, hill running combines the body’s effort to fight gravity with your hip flexors, gluteus, hamstrings, quadriceps, calves, ankles and feet.

Don’t Look Down

Follow these simple tricks down the hill to reduce injury and increase fast twitch muscles fibers for more power and agility when heading down-hill.

• Don’t lean too far forward. This will cause you to increase lower back strain and pain
• Do keep your chin up, literally, and keep an upright position
• Don’t let your feet slap the ground; this will develop a weakness in the shins
• Do take lighter steps with an extended, elongated stride
• Don’t keep the same pace as running on flat ground
• Do focus on your breath to slow down your pace and gain more control.