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Wimbledon Clinics

Running Tips For Beginners

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Have you ever wondered why people run? What would convince someone to get out of bed or off the couch and partake in a sweaty activity?

Firstly, it’s a great and simple way to exercise, and it’s one of the best calorie-blasting workouts around. Before you hit the ground running, here are a few running tips for beginners.

1. Build your fitness levels before you start 

It’s important to ease yourself into running. If you are completely new to running, make sure to take it slow in the beginning. Build your fitness levels by walking and doing some light jogging – this will prepare your body for the regular impact of your feet hitting the ground. Try to do this for a month before you start running intensively.  

2. Get the right gear

The biggest running mistake you can make is to wear the improper gear. Invest in comfortable loose clothing, a good sports bra (as appropriate), and a good pair of running shoes. If you’re not sure which shoe to get, ask a specialist retailer to assess your foot and find the right shoe for you. The right running shoe will provide comfort and reduce the risk of injury.3. Plan your route and time

It can be tempting to just run out the door and go where the road takes you. But if you really want to commit, make sure you plan your route and time. Work out when and where you want to run and put it in your diary or on an app on your phone. If you have a running plan, it will be easier to stick to. We love the Couch to 5K program is a great running plan for beginners.4. Warm up and cool down

As with any fitness activity, it’s important to warm up before you exercise and cool down afterwards. A warm-up increases your blood flow and prepares your body for exercise—this is important for reducing the risk of injury. A good warm-up should last for about five to ten minutes, and can include jogging on the spot, knee lifts, and some leg and hip stretches. A cool-down is important for returning your heart rate to resting level and stretch your muscles to reduce injury. Try to do some slow and gentle stretching, and hold it for 15 to 30 seconds.5. Improve your technique

A good running technique is crucial for your efficiency, speed, and injury prevention. Firstly, it’s important to have a good running posture. Keep your back straight and centre your head between your shoulders. Look ahead of you instead of straight down, and relax your jaw and neck. Also try deep abdominal breathing, and try to Push off as you take your next stride rather than pulling through your arms.  It’s more efficient and less tiring.

6. Stay motivated

Need motivation to run? The best way to do this is to set yourself challenges and goals. Training for a race or a marathon is a good way to stay motivated. You can also change things up by running different routes or doing some cross-training. Many runners like listening to music when they run, so make yourself a playlist with some of your favourite (preferably upbeat) music.7. Join a club

Joining a running club is a great way for beginners to stay motivated. It’s hard getting out of bed at 6am, but if you have people waiting for you, you’ll have extra motivation to get up and go running. A running club will ensure you meet like-minded people who will push you to do better and challenge yourself.8. Prevent injuries

Prevention is better than cure, many new runners fail to prepare. An Injury Prevention Screening Programme will minimise the risk of common injuries such as  pulled calf muscles, sore quads, or aching hips from running too fast or from doing too much before they’re ready. Click here to download Running Injury Infographic. Wearing the wrong shoes can also lead to injury – if your shoes don’t have great shock-absorbency, you’ll end up putting a lot of strain on your joints. If you want to prevent a running injury, get support and advice from specialists like the ones at Wimbledon’s Running Injury Clinic.

If you think you have a running injury and need advice and specialist treatment, then contact us today and we’ll put together a solid strategy for treatment and recovery, so you can get back to what you love doing as soon as possible.

For more information on identifying and preventing running injuries, click here.