There are many examples of completely serious or plainly normal scenes in anime where a girl is running but then, I have to burst out in laughter because they are swinging their arms horizontally left and right.
I swear, no one runs like this. I've been in Japan, as well as other Asian countries, and I swear this is not some hidden cultural manifesto. The most probable answer I can think of is that when women wear purses, one arm might move like this to keep the purse strap secured but not both arms.
What is the origin of this and why is it such a phenomenon?