3 Best Yoga Poses for Runners

Fallen Warrior

Now that you've opened up the quads a bit, it's time for the most delicious, but often forgotten, IT band stretch. Fallen warrior is simply Trikonasana (triangle pose) on the floor.

  • Begin in triangle pose, and take a few breaths for the inner thigh.

More: How to Do a Triangle Pose

  • Square the hips over the front foot and slowly bring the pose to the ground.
  • If your right leg is forward, sit so that your right leg is now straight across your yoga mat with the left leg behind me.  
  • Most runners will be very tight in this pose, so the back leg will mostly likely not be straight behind you, and that's OK, but try to keep the front leg as straight as possible.
  • Stay here for five long, deep breaths.
  • You can also use the hands to press up a few inches and come to the balls of the back foot to play with your hip rotation and explore the varying degrees of the pose.
More: Post-Run Yoga Routine

Hamstring Sequence

Time to tackle the inner and outer hamstrings as well as the gluteus maximus. Lie on your back with a strap, or stand up if you're feeling energetic.

  • Begin by bending the left leg (foot on the floor) while you extend the right leg up to the sky.
  • Wrap the strap around your right foot and gently pull it towards you, keeping the tailbone pressing down into your mat. The right leg can be slightly bent.
  • Continue the stretch by letting the leg fall open to the right side and take five deep breaths.
  • Be careful not to let the left sit bone float up.
  • You can even place your left hand on the pelvis to keep it steady.
  • Guide the right leg back to center and gently bring the stretch to the opposite side (left).
  • Take five long, deep breaths.
  • Bring the leg back to center and pull it towards you for the grand finale. Bend the knee to come down and begin the other side.

Keep in mind that in all poses, a nice, balanced joint space is far more important than achieving a particular range of motion, so always look to achieve sensation, not pain.

More: Yoga Stretches for Runners

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