Running also aids in building muscle, improving cardiovascular health, and helps in weight loss efforts. All in all, it is a great method of exercise when it comes to a high intensity workout.
Where running differs from yoga, however, is that it can put a great deal of stress on your muscles, joints, and ligaments – especially for regular runners. In fact, experts estimate that for every mile that one runs, their feet hit the ground approximately 1,000 times.
If someone runs around 20 miles every week, their feet will hit the ground around 20,000 times each. The result of this repetitive impact is that your hips and legs can be affected, leading to stiffness or pain.
Yoga can assist in staying flexible and less prone to injury during running, and it can also help to keep you from becoming easily fatigued during a run. Check out our favorite yoga poses for runners that have the benefits listed above.
Yoga Poses Recommended for Runners
Thread the Needle pose
This pose is designed to stretch the outside of your hips as well as your inner thighs, all which help in being flexible and priming your body for a long run. To complete this pose, you should lie flat on your back and bring one knee towards your chest at a 90-degree angle.
Next, position your right ankle on your left thigh and interlock your fingers while keeping them at the back of your thighs. Then, pull your left thigh towards your chest and hold in this position for approximately 30 seconds.
Once you feel tension building, allow your body to relax, then repeating the exercise with the opposite leg. Check out a video instructional of this pose here.
If you’re looking to open your shoulders and add strength to your core, this is the perfect move for you. Because running tends to prompt us to hunch forward, this a good counteractive pose against that tendency.
To complete the move, you should start by lying on your back and placing your feet flat on the ground, hip-width apart. Then, lift your hips up towards the ceiling while engaging your core.
Finally, clasp your hands together underneath your pelvis and roll your shoulder blades towards each other. This video tutorial is a great example of how this pose should be orchestrated.
Seated spinal twist pose
This is a great pose to do after a long run as it aids in loosening your spine and easing shoulder and neck muscles, which tend to tense up during a run. To do this pose, cross one leg over the other while keeping your knees straight up and the soles of your feet on the ground.
Reach your opposite hand across your body while pushing it against the outside of the thigh to make the twist accentuated. For a visual of this pose, watch this instructional.
While these are just three of the many poses that are great pre- or post- run, there are many others. Attend a Texas Rock Gym yoga class today to indulge in even more that compliment a regular running schedule perfectly.