If you run on a regular basis, know that yoga can help you become a better athlete. You can do a few poses before or after running, it is up to you. Here are X yoga routines for runners.
Yoga is an ancient tradition focused on physical, mental and spiritual practices. If you are new to yoga, we recommend clicking here to learn a few basic poses.
Know that there are many styles of yoga such as Vinyasa, Ashtanga, Iyengar and Sivananda. At their core, all styles focus on the union between the body, mind and spirit.
Keep reading to find out some of the best yoga routines for runners. We separated them into routines to do before going for a run, or after running.
Is Yoga Goof for Runners?
Yes! A yoga routine can help loosen tight spots and strengthen weak areas. If you are an avid runner, there might be a few muscles you are neglecting that could leave you open to injuries. Yoga could fix that.
Also, if you do yoga before running, it can help you stretch some important lower-body muscles before you begin running outside, although you should not overstretch as it could hinder your performance.
Yoga also helps your recovery by alleviating soreness and tension after an arduous run.
Other than that, yoga is beneficial for runners because it:
- Builds a stronger core – a stronger core stabilises your spine and reduces your risk of injury when running
- Increases your flexibility – no more tight hamstrings before or after running
- Improves your breathing – runners will benefit immensely from new breathing techniques
How Often Should You Do Yoga If You Are a Runner?
Yoga is fantastic for any athlete, but should you do it every day? If you have the time, certainly. Yoga, as mentioned above, can help you recover from intense physical activities such as running.
If you cannot do yoga every day, aim to get around 2-3 times a week so that you strengthen your muscles and stretch them at the same time, safeguarding against future injuries.
Yoga Routines for Runners – Before Running
The following yoga routines are best used before running. That is to say that these routines will stretch your lower body and core, but should not be too long. Longer yoga routines (30+ minutes) will only fatigue your muscles, which could hinder your running capabilities if done before.
With that in mind, here are some yoga poses you could do before running. More below, you will find full yoga routines for runners.
Downward Dog (1-2 minutes)
Half Pigeon Pose (1-3 minutes)
Supine Spinal Twist (1-3 minutes)
Yoga Routines for Runners – After Running
Most people’s advice is to practise yoga after running because you will have exhausted your muscles and these routines will help you stretch your lower body and decrease your risk of injury.
These yoga routines are longer and more “traditional.”
Read More: 6 Essential Restorative Yoga Poses
These questions and answers from the NHS will help you with further questions about yoga and yoga poses.
Am I too old for yoga?
“Definitely not. People often start yoga in their 70s, and many say they wish they had started sooner. There are yoga classes for every age group. Yoga is a form of exercise that can be enjoyed at any time, from childhood to your advanced years.”
Do I have to be fit to do yoga?
“No. You can join a class suitable for your fitness level. For example, to join a mixed-ability yoga class, you need to be able to get up and down from the floor. Some yoga classes are chair-based.”
Do I need to be flexible to do yoga?
“Not necessarily. Yoga will improve your flexibility and help you go beyond your normal range of movement, which may make performing your daily activities easier.”
Can I injure myself doing yoga?
“Yoga-related injuries are uncommon. Some injuries can be caused by repetitive strain or overstretching.
But yoga is the same as any other exercise discipline – it’s perfectly safe if taught properly by people who understand it and have experience.
It’s advisable to learn from a qualified yoga teacher and choose a class appropriate to your level.”