Return to Running Postpartum: Stroller Running 101

Optimal Posture to Reduce Pain When Running With Kiddos

Dr. heather Alaniz Breathe. Physical Therapy & Wellness Running with Stroller Pain When Running Postpartum Running

Returning to run postpartum is hard….add a stroller in there and it’s even more challenging!  (See Dr. Liz’s post for guidelines on returning to run postpartum.) 

As a mom of two young boys (ages 3 and 1), I, Heather, run most of my miles with a double running stroller. I find it’s one of the easiest ways for me to workout because I can just take the kids with me!  However, running while pushing a stroller is very different than running without one and can sometimes lead to aches and pains you may not have experienced in your previous running life. First of all, way to go if you are taking this challenge on. 

And secondly here are a few tips to help you along the way!

1. Keep Stroller Close

Keep the stroller close to your  body and don’t let it get too far ahead of you (See the difference between the first and second picture)…by keeping the stroller close to your body you have more control of the stroller and are better able to use your core and gluteal muscles to push.

2. Shorten Your Stride

Try to shorten your stride length or take smaller steps.  By doing this you actually decrease ground reaction forces which means there is less stress going through your ankles, knees, hips and spine.

3. Weight In The Ball of Your Foot

Pay attention to the angle of your heel strike; in other words, try not to land too sharply on your heel and shift your weight more into the ball of your foot.  This will improve your ability to propel the stroller forward using your core and gluteal muscles.

4. Keep Shoulders Down and Back

As much as possible keep your shoulders down and slightly back; this will help you keep the stroller close to you and avoid upper back, neck and shoulder pain that can happen when you are pushing 50+ pounds of weight.

5. Listen to Your Body

If it doesn’t feel good or something starts to hurt even after a good warm up never feel guilty for stopping and walking.  Walking with the stroller is also great exercise (especially going up a hill!).  Listen to your body, it almost always knows what you need.

If you still have pain or difficulty when you run whether it’s with a stroller or not give us a call at (515)-255-3932 or book an appointment online today.   Happy running Momma….you are amazing!