08/21/2009 05:12 am ET Updated Nov 17, 2011

Can Running Hurt You More Than Help You?

10 tips for proper running technique

It is afternoon and I walk by one of the gyms in New York City where you can look into the cardio equipment. People running, sweating, and I am going into cardio arrest -- at least I thought.

I see individuals on the bike with turned out legs, hunched over and the knee position is not correct. I see individuals running on a treadmill with forward headed shoulders, holding on to the treadmill, not lifting up their heels, the eyes down to the floor or glued to the TV.... I can go on.

"Stop" I think to my self. Here are some simple guidelines to follow when you run, indoors or outdoors:

1. Bend your arms 45 degrees and keep that 45 degree angle when you run

2. Swing your arms back and fourth without increasing the angle

3. Your knees are in alignment with your toes, hips and shoulders. If not, you need to perform corrective exercises

4. Activate your abdominal wall and your pelvic floor

5. Slight pelvic tilt

6. Press your shoulder blades down towards your heels while running

7. Avoid rounding with your shoulders forward

8. Eyes straight forward

9. Tilt your chin slightly towards your chest

10. Lift up your heels towards your butt and bring your knees up

These are the most important rules you need to implement while running. Not following those simple rules can increase wear and tear on your ligaments, tendons and joints resulting in pain that could have been avoided.

And just a note, sprinting has different focus points then running as the strike pattern varies.

Stefan Aschan is a leading expert on lifestyle, health and fitness who has helped more than 30,000 people get fit through advice on nutrition, fitness and lifestyle changes. For your free "How to live 100 years in perfect health" report and the must read "updates and solution" newsletter on how to have 10 times more success, stay on top of your goals, and accomplish the change of body and appearance, go here.