Relax Your Body, Improve Running Performance

  • Lie on your back or sit comfortably in a chair with your spine straight. Place your thumb on one of your nostrils and your middle finger on the other. Close one nostril with your thumb and breathe in through the opposite nostril. When you've inhaled completely, close the nostril you just breathed in through with your middle finger and exhale by releasing the thumb and letting the air go out through that nostril.

    Exhale completely by pulling your belly button in towards your spine. When you've completely exhaled, let your belly expand and refill your lungs through the same nostril. When you've completely filled your lungs, close that nostril with your thumb and exhale through the nostril that your middle finger was holding closed.

    The cycle of breathing should go: inhale with left nostril, close it, exhale through the right nostril; inhale through the right nostril, close it, exhale through the left nostril; inhale through theleft nostril, etc. Do this for 30 breaths, then go wash your hands.

    This will oxygenate your muscles and calm your brain, leaving you in a very relaxed state.

  • The Body Looseners section in both the Chi Running and Chi Walking books and DVDs are the best way to loosen and relax your body before working out, or anytime at all. You can use the whole set to relax your whole body or just use the loosener that applies to the particular area of your body where you feel tension.

Staying relaxed is a practice well worth making into a daily habit.

Relaxation creates a healthier body, leads to more ease and enjoyment of your walking and running, and promotes a higher quality of life. When you're relaxed, chi can flow. Chi Running and Chi Walking are reminders that good things don't have to be difficult. As a matter of fact, the more you relax, the easier it gets.

Active logo Use these techniques to relax before and after a race.


Danny Dreyer is the creator of ChiRunning? and ChiWalking?, revolutionary forms of moving that blend T'ai Chi with running and walking.

ChiRunning and ChiWalking by Danny and Katherine Dreyer are No. 1 sellers with over 350,000 copies sold.

As an accomplished ultra marathoner, Danny speaks at prestigious wellness events across the country. He has taught training groups including the AIDS Marathon and Team in Training, USA/FIT. Danny, along with more than 135 Certified Instructors, holds capacity-filled clinics around the world.

Danny's lifestyle is steeped in holistic living, meditation, and personal wellness and is the foundation of what he teaches.


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