5 Essential Yoga Poses for Runners

Mindith Rahmat


Women's Fitness, Yoga, Natural Movement, Bodyweight Exercise, Kettlebells

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Are you feeling sore, achy, or tight after a run? Over time, running without proper mobility and stretching can lead to imbalances in the body resulting in sprains, pains, and injuries. Yoga is a wonderful tool to help mobilize and stretch tough spots where runners need more mobility.


Benefits of a Consistent Yoga Practice For Runners Can Include:

  • Improved Performance
  • Reduced Risk of Injury
  • Faster Recovery
  • Improved Balance and Agility
  • Improved Focus and Concentration for Competition
  • Increased Strength and Flexibility
  • Prevention of Sports Related Injuries
  • Greater Range of Motion
  • Improved Circulation



5 Essential Yoga Poses for Runners

Use this sequence to open the calves, quadriceps, hamstrings, iliotibial band, and hip flexors. Practice these poses after your workout or run. Your body should be slightly warm before you go deep in a yoga pose. Stay in each pose for 10-15 breaths.


1. Downward-Facing Dog

Bring the hands shoulder-width apart and feet hip with apart. Press your hands and feet down into the floor. Lengthen through your spine and release the shoulders down the back. Stretch your heels down into the floor. Press the bases of the index fingers actively into the floor.



2. Seated Pigeon Pose

In a seated position cross the right left over the left, placing your left foot down on the floor flat. Your hands should be behind your body and pressing gently through the floor. Open your chest and extending up through the the spine. Repeat on the opposite side.


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3. Crescent Lunge

Step your right leg through into a low lunge pose. Place your hands on floor finding a deep lunge as you release your back knee down into the floor. Extend the arms upward to take the stretch in the upper body. Repeat on the opposite side.



4. Standing Forward Bend

Start in a standing position the right leg should be at the top of your mat and the left leg behind you. Keeping your feet about hip distance apart and ground all four corners of the feet to the mat for balance and stability. Fold down over the front leg in a forward bend. Keep your neck relaxed by looking down towards the floor as you go deeper into the forward bend. Repeat on the opposite side.


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5. Pigeon Pose

Begin to heel toe the right foot over in the front of your mat. Your back left leg should extend straight out from the hip behind you and rotate slightly inward. Gently drape your body over the right leg. You can also try reaching the arms upward to stretch through the chest and spine. Repeat on the opposite side.



Yogi’s Tip

Take your time and be patient when starting a new yoga practice. Build your yoga practice slowly over time. At first many athletes especially runners, will find many of the poses challenging due to tight musculature. Try to find a local yoga class or yoga teacher, look at your form and give you any modifications.

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