Running Backwards – How Beneficial Is It?
Heard about running backwards? Well, I am not talking about your life goals but about literally running backwards! It is a fitness trend that is catching up lately. It is also called retro running, reverse running and backward running. Keep reading to find out why it has become so popular!
Logically it does not make sense. It is something like the diet and fitness fads doing rounds these days. Our eyes are in front and that means that we have not evolved to run or walk backwards. On top of that running backwards seems awkward and only increases the chances of tripping over.
Running backwards – Why is it so popular?
The trend of backward running is catching up so fast that now it is a part of international championships. Even in India, the activity has become popular. It is most likely that you can see someone running backwards in the park or on the jogging track.
Benefits of running backwards
Backward running is not as irrational as it seems at the first glance. And that is why it is used in some fitness training routines.
1) Improves Posture
It is not unusual to see runners slouch forward when they run normally, especially when they are tired. However, when you run backwards, you are forced to keep the back naturally straight thereby reducing the chances of lower back pain.
2) Helps in weight loss
Losing extra flab is the ultimate goal of many people. It has been found that backward running can help you with that. It delivers the best weight loss results. There are certain studies that prove that you can actually burn 20% more calories by running backwards when compared to forward running.
3) Improves performance
Running backwards is obviously quite challenging. It tests your endurance and required greater effort and awareness. It helps in boosting stamina and is that is why it is often used in training routines to prepare athletes for sprints and marathons.
4) Helps in muscle development
Running is good for health but the movements are repetitive with the same muscle groups get exercises all the time. On the other hand, running backwards shakes things up by helping you develop the opposing muscle groups and giving you an even form. It helps in building muscle strength in calves, shins and quads.
5) Reduces risk of injuries
When you run, it is quite common to suffer from painful stress injuries that are commonly associated with running. Alternating between or mixing forward and backward running reduces the risk of stress injuries as there is less amount of pressure on your knees and ankles. Alternating also allows muscle recovery without the need of any break from the activity.
Apart from benefits mentioned here, there is a thrill of trying out something new. Running backwards or even walking will give you a new view of the world. Just ensure that there are no open manholes or potholes on the sidewalk you choose. It would be better to practice it in a park or a running track.
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