Why Do You Get Upper Back Pain After Running?

Do you experience upper back pain after running? If so, you’re not alone. Many runners suffer from this type of pain, which can be pretty debilitating. In this post, we’ll explore some of the possible causes of upper back pain after running and offer some tips for alleviating it. Stay tuned!

As a general rule, upper back pain after running is likely due to a forward head posture. When runners are tired, they start to slouch. Every inch of forwarding head posture can increase the head’s weight on the spine by 10 pounds, leading to strain and pain in the upper back.

I’m going to explain why you get upper back pain after running. I’ve been helping and treating people with this problem for 30 years. I’ve also done a lot of research on the subject and even wrote a book about it.

woman upper back pain

How Do I Get Rid of Upper Back Pain After Running?

Many runners experience upper back pain at some point in their lives. While the pain can be frustrating, there are several things you can do to get rid of it. 

First, check your spinal alignment. If your shoulders are hunched forward, your back muscles will have to work overtime to keep you upright, leading to pain. 








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Second, focus on your breathing. When you run, you should breathe deeply and evenly. Taking shallow breaths can cause your shoulders to rise, which strains your back muscles. 

Finally, make sure you’re using the proper form. If you slouch when you run, you’ll strain your back muscles. By following these tips, you can help prevent upper back pain from running.

Is It Normal for My Back to Hurt After Running?

As a general rule, it is normal for your back to hurt after running if you do not have good spinal alignment. This can be caused by several things: weak abdominal muscles, tight hamstrings, and being weighed down by a heavy backpack. 

man upper back pain

To help fix this, try doing some spinal strengthening exercises such as sit-ups and planks. You should also work on stretching your hamstrings and lower back. If you still have pain, it may be time to see a chiropractic or physiotherapist doctor to assess your spinal alignment.

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Is It Normal to Have Upper Back Pain After a Workout?

In general, it’s perfectly normal to experience some upper back pain after a workout. It’s an excellent sign that you’re correctly aligning your spine during your exercises. 

The spinal column comprises 33 vertebrae, and these bones need to be in alignment for the muscles and ligaments to work correctly. When you work out, your spinal column is likely to shift out of alignment, which can cause upper back pain

young woman upper back pain

However, this pain is temporary and will go away once your spinal column pops back into place. So if you’re experiencing some upper back pain after a workout, don’t worry – it’s completely normal! Just be sure to keep the proper spinal alignment in mind during your next session.

Why Does My Upper Back Get Tight When I Run?

When you run, your spinal alignment changes and the extra impact from running can cause your spinal column to compress, which in turn can lead to upper back pain. In addition, poor posture when running can put additional strain on your back and cause tightness in the muscles. 








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To help prevent upper back pain when running, it is vital to maintain good spinal alignment. Pay attention to your posture and ensure that you are not slouching forward. 

Additionally, try to relax your shoulders and keep them down and away from your ears. Finally, be aware of your breathing and ensure that you are not holding your breath while running. You can help prevent upper back pain and improve your overall running form by following these tips.

Forward Head Posture Causing Upper Back Pain

It’s not uncommon for people to have upper back pain after running. You typically also get tired because they’ve been trying to hold their head up against gravity. According to one study, every inch of forwarding head posture increases the head’s weight on the spine by an additional 10 pounds. (-Kapandji, Physiology of Joints, Vol. 3).

Rene Cailliet M.D., a former director of the department of physical medicine and rehabilitation at the University of Southern California, wrote:

  • Poor posture can add up to thirty pounds of abnormal leverage on your spine if you have poor posture. This can pull your spine out of alignment. 
  • Forward head posture (FHP) may result in 30% of vital lung capacity loss. These breath-related effects are primarily due to the loss of the cervical lordosis, which blocks the action of the hyoid muscles, especially the inferior hyoid responsible for helping lift the first rib during inhalation.
  • There are many things you can do to improve your posture. People usually focus on the spine, shoulders, and pelvis. But the most important thing is to get your head in the correct position. The rest of your body will follow.

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Best Way to Fix Forward Head Posture

Spending a lot of time sitting, whether at a desk, in a car, or on the couch, can lead to poor posture. This can lead to bad posture while exercising. To correct this problem, it is important to sit correctly. By engaging the core muscles and not the spine, an orthopedic seat cushion can help to strengthen the muscles that support the spine and improve posture while sitting and exercising. This can help reduce the likelihood of experiencing back pain or other issues related to poor posture.

seat cushion piriformis

If you want a more comfortable sitting experience, consider using an orthopedic seat wedge. This can provide a better surface to sit on and angle your upper legs higher than your torso. However, it is important to maintain an upright posture while using it. Sitting upright can help to reduce stress on the lower back by distributing weight naturally and placing less strain on joints, discs, and ligaments.

Why Do Shoulder Blades Hurt After Running?

Most people have experienced occasional pain in their shoulder blades after running, but this pain is a regular occurrence for some. There are several possible explanations for why this happens. One possibility is posture-related.

woman running upper back pain

If you tend to hunch forward when you run, it can strain the muscles and joints in your upper back, which can lead to pain. Another possibility is that you’re not using the right form.

Your arms should swing back and forth, not across your body when you run. This helps to generate momentum and prevents you from over-rotating at the waist, which can strain your back. Finally, it’s also possible that you’re simply wearing the wrong shoes. Shoes that don’t provide enough support can lead to problems as well.

Can Running Hurt Your Shoulders?

While running is a great way to get some exercise, it can also be tough on your body. One of the most common problems runners face is shoulder pain. This is often caused by poor posture

Your shoulders should be relaxed and down when you run, not hunched up around your ears. If your posture is poor, it puts extra strain on your shoulders and neck, leading to pain. 

Additionally, if you regularly run with a backpack or purse, the straps can dig into your shoulders and irritate you. To avoid these problems, make sure to maintain good posture while running and distribute the weight evenly across your body.

Why Do I Get Lower Back Pain After Running?

Many runners experience lower back pain at some point during their training. There are a number of possible explanations for this problem. One possibility is that the runner is not using the proper form. This can cause the muscles and joints in the back to work harder than they need to, leading to pain and discomfort.

woman jogging low back pain

Another possibility is that the runner is not properly stretching before and after running. This can lead to tightness in the muscles and joints, which can in turn cause pain. Finally, it is also possible that the runner is simply overtraining. This can put a lot of strain on the body, which can lead to pain and other problems.

If you are experiencing lower back pain after running, it is important to see a doctor or other medical professional to rule out any serious causes. In most cases, however, the cause is likely to be one of the above-mentioned issues. By addressing these issues, you can help to eliminate or reduce your lower back pain.

Is It Normal to Have Back Pain After Running?

Back pain is a common complaint among runners of all levels, from novice to elite. While some degree of discomfort is to be expected, especially after long runs or hard workouts, sharp or persistent pain can be a sign that something is wrong. However, it can be difficult to determine whether back pain is normal or indicative of a more serious problem.

low back pain after running

There are a number of potential causes of back pain in runners. One of the most common is simply poor form. Slouching or hunching over as you run can put unnecessary strain on your back muscles and lead to pain. Additionally, wearing shoes that don’t provide adequate support can also lead to back pain. Poorly cushioned shoes can cause your feet to strike the ground with too much force, which can send shockwaves up your spine and lead to pain.

Overuse is another common cause of back pain in runners. If you suddenly increase your mileage or the intensity of your workouts without giving your body time to adjust, you may start to experience pain. Additionally, running with poor form on a regular basis can also lead to overuse injuries. These injuries are often slow to heal and can be extremely painful.

If you’re experiencing back pain that doesn’t seem to have an obvious cause, it’s important to see a doctor. In some cases, back pain can be indicative of a more serious problem, such as a stress fracture or herniated disc. A doctor will be able to order appropriate tests and determine whether or not your pain is cause for concern.


While there can be many causes of upper back pain after running, some of the most common include poor posture, weak muscles, and tight muscles. 

Fortunately, there are several things you can do to help alleviate this type of pain. In addition to practicing good posture and regularly stretching your muscles, you may also want to consider using a foam roller or massage ball to loosen up any tight spots. If these tips don’t provide relief, it’s best to consult with a chiropractor or physical therapist who can help identify the root cause of your problem and recommend appropriate treatment options. 


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Dr Lawrence Woods DC

Dr Lawrence Woods DC


My goal is to create the highest quality ergonomic office chairs and accessories for unmatched comfort.

With 30 years of spinal healthcare experience in Ireland as a chiropractor, I learned the value of high-quality sitting for living a happy and healthy life.

I have a Chiropractic Degree from Life Chiropractic College West and I am NBCE Physiotherapy certified.


Dr Lawrence Woods

My goal is to create the highest quality ergonomic office chairs and accessories for unmatched comfort. With 30 years of spinal healthcare experience as a chiropractor, I learned the value of high-quality sleep for living a happy and healthy life. I have a Chiropractic Degree from Life Chiropractic College West and am NBCE Physiotherapy certified.

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