Yoga for Runners: Poses to Stretch it out Post-Run

Posted by Hom Yoga on

By Anna Hearn

Sure, pounding the pavement is a great way to stay in shape, but with it comes a risk. As our feet hit the ground, the movement of running compacts and contracts the muscles, setting the stage for tight muscles, pain and even injury.

That is where yoga comes into play. Yoga offers both strength-building and muscle-sculpting benefits, both of which complement the cardiovascular benefits of running. Combine the two activities and you would have a perfectly balanced routine that marries both the yin and the yang of fitness!

Crucial areas affected by avid running include the hips, hamstrings and glutes. After a run, it is helpful to roll out your mat and stretch out with yoga asanas that target these muscle groups. Try low lunge (anjaneyasana), pyramid pose (parsvottanasana), half pigeon (ardha kapotasana) and seated forward fold (paschimottonasana). If you have more time, add on poses that also take care of your body’s other important muscles. I recommend including hero pose (virasana), child’s pose (balasana), thread the needle (parsva balasana) and spinal twist (ardha matsyendrasana), followed by legs up against the wall (viparita karani) for a restorative end to your practice. When the poses are strung together, this sequence provides an ideal post-run routine that promises to loosen as well as strengthen the muscles that are engaged during your jog.

The additional beauty of a consistent yoga practice is that it strengthens and supports mental clarity and focus – things that are often called upon at race time when mental staying power is equally, if not more important than physical endurance!

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