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5 Great Glute Stretches for All Runners

You’ve got tight glutes; we’ve got solutions.

The strains of running sometimes call for a good session of glute stretches. Whether induced by a hard hill session or a long run, your glutes can get pretty tight after running and call for some attention.

Having strong and healthy glutes will not only benefit your daily life but can also improve your running; your buttocks are a key factor in sprints and hill training and can deliver speed and power.

If you get tight glutes after running these fantastic glute stretches might help, try them out!

5 great glute stretches for runners

Learn how to stretch your glute muscles with these great glute stretches. It is recommended you stretch after a run, as your muscles are still warm and flexible, but never overexert yourself to limit the risk of overstretching.

Stretching can help release tension created by muscle overexertion, which in turn can relieve discomfort in the targeted muscles and surrounding areas.  

Standing glute stretch

standing figure of four glute stretchSource: Mathilde Langevin on Unsplash

The standing figure-four stretch is a fantastic stretch for the glute muscles and the back of your hamstrings.

This standing variation requires good flexibility and ankle stability.

How to do it

  1. Stand straight with your feet on the same line and your crown tall.
  2. Lift your right leg and bring your right ankle to the top of your left knee, pushing your knee outwards, to recreate a figure of 4 with your legs.
  3. Bend your foot and slowly bend your left knee as you push your hips downward as you’d do during a squat.
  4. Stop when you feel a good stretch in the right glute and relax. Hold the stretch here anywhere from 10 seconds to a minute.
  5. Slowly stand up and bring your right leg back to the ground in a controlled manner. Return to the initial position and repeat with the other leg.

Pigeon pose stretch

The pigeon stretch is a classic yoga pose excellent for stretching all muscles from the lower back to the hamstring, with a big emphasis on the glutes.

How to do it

  1. Start on all fours, with your hands and knees along the same line and a neutral spine.
  2. Bring your right knee to your right wrist, with your right ankle close to your left wrist, and place your shin on the floor.
  3. Stretch the left leg back, bringing your knee and the top of your left foot to touch the ground.
  4. Bring your weight towards the top of your hips and extend your spine, then gently walk your hands forward and bring your torso with you.
  5. Hold this position anywhere between 10 seconds and 2 minutes, then return to the initial position and switch legs.

Open lunge stretch

runner does lizard pose stretch by the beachSource: Patrick Malleret on Unsplash

The lizard pose is excellent for stretching the back of your glute muscles and opening the hips.

How to do it

  1. Start on all fours, with your hands and knees along the same line – hands over your shoulders and knees over your hips – and a neutral spine.
  2. Bring your right foot to the outside of your right hand, then extend your left leg backwards, bringing your knee, shin and the top of the foot to the floor.
  3. Push your right knee outward and, with the back stretched, lower your forearms to the ground.
  4. Hold for 30 seconds to two minutes, then return to the initial position and repeat with the other leg.

Lying glute stretch

The knee to chest stretch unstiffens the back of the hamstrings and the glutes. It is very easy to make this stretch more or less intense depending on how tight your pull your leg towards you.

How to do it

  1. Lie flat on your back with your legs extended and your arms by your sides.
  2. Bend your right leg and bring your right knee towards your chest.
  3.  Warp your arms around the top of your shin and gently pull your leg closer to your body, keeping your back flat on the ground.
  4. Hold for anywhere between 30 seconds and two minutes, release and return to the initial position, then repeat the glute stretch on the other side.  

Seated twist stretch

The seated twist does not only relax the glute muscles but is also a lovely lower back stretch.

How to do it

  1. Sit on the floor with both legs extended in front of you, your hands by your sides, and your spine tall.
  2. Bring the right leg towards you and place your right foot over your left leg, next to your left knee.
  3. Bring your right hand behind you and use your left arm to hug your right leg and push it out, twisting your upper body to the right. You should feel a deep stretch across your back and right glute.
  4. Hold the stretch for 20 to 40 seconds and release. You can turn to the opposite side to relax the back.
  5. Return to the initial position and repeat on the other side.

These are the five best stretches for glute muscles XX

Read more: 7 Exercises to Develop Powerful Glutes

The glute muscles

There are three major muscles in your glutes:

  • Gluteus maximus
  • Gluteus medius
  • Gluteus minimus

They make up the largest muscle group in your body and help you walk, run, jump, and climb up stairs.

Read more: How to Train Your Glutes with Dumbbells

Why stretch your glutes after running?

New research published in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise found that strong glutes deliver a superior sprint performance. The takeaway? You should take good care of your glutes for a stronger performance.

Stretching after running can prevent stiffness and boost flexibility. If your muscles already feel tight, stretching can release tension and relieve mild pain.

While glute stretches can treat muscle stiffness, glute exercises to strengthen these muscles can be a preventive measure against pain, stiffness and discomfort. We have compiled an in-depth guide to bigger and stronger glutes, including exercises and workouts for you to try.

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