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Workouts For Runners: Yoga Stretches

Workouts For Runners: Yoga Stretches

This month’s installment of the super popular series Workouts For Runner’s is YOGA STRETCHES! If you run, then you know what it’s like to have the runner’s high. You relish in the feeling of running your fastest and farthest distance. You monitor your heart rate and your calories burned. Yoga is really the opposite of running, it forces you to slow down, to be still, to connect with your body on new levels.

Let’s face it, Yoga is amazing for runners.

One of my goals every year is to be better at yoga. I have never been the most flexible human, but I know what yoga does for me and how it challenges me so I am always looking to take it to the next level! I now use insanely good Yoga apps like —> The Asana Rebel Yoga App Is Everything Yoga Dreams Are Made Of.

This month I am sharing Yoga Stretches from my favorite runner bloggers. Seeing all of these workouts is not only inspiring but confirmation that I need to be better and more consistent with my yoga practice. Here are some of my favorite yoga stretches to open up those tight hips!

My Top Five Stretches are:

Downward Dog

Pigeon Pose

Bound Angle Pose

Shin To Shin

Runner’s Lunge


Running, with its repetitive nature and high-impact demands, often leads to tight muscles, imbalances, and a heightened risk of injuries. That’s where yoga steps in, offering a complementary practice that can deeply benefit runners of all levels. Here’s why integrating yoga into a runner’s routine can be a game-changer:

1. Improved Flexibility: Runners often have tight hamstrings, calves, and hip flexors due to the repetitive and linear motion of running. Yoga poses like Downward-Facing Dog, Pigeon Pose, and Forward Bends can help lengthen and stretch these muscles, promoting greater flexibility and range of motion.

2. Enhanced Strength: Certain yoga poses focus on building strength in underworked muscle groups, providing runners with a more balanced musculature. For instance, poses like Chair Pose and Warrior series can strengthen the quads, calves, and ankles, while Plank and Boat Pose can boost core strength.

3. Breath Control and Lung Capacity: Pranayama, or yogic breathing exercises, can teach runners to utilize their lung capacity more effectively, leading to better oxygenation during runs. Deep breathing techniques can also help in pacing and staying calm during challenging parts of a run.

4. Mental Focus and Clarity: The meditative aspects of yoga emphasize mindfulness, focus, and staying present. This mental training can be invaluable for runners, especially during long distances, when mental stamina becomes as crucial as physical endurance.

5. Improved Posture and Alignment: Yoga promotes body awareness, helping runners become more attuned to their posture and alignment. This can lead to better running form, making each stride more efficient and reducing the risk of injuries.

6. Faster Recovery: Restorative yoga practices can aid in quicker recovery post-runs by promoting relaxation, increasing circulation, and reducing muscle tension. Poses like Legs-Up-the-Wall can help in draining lactic acid and speeding up muscle recovery.

7. Injury Prevention: Yoga helps in identifying and rectifying muscle imbalances and tightness. Regular practice can lead to a more balanced body, which translates to a lower risk of common running injuries such as IT band syndrome, shin splints, and runner’s knee.

8. Enhanced Balance and Stability: Balancing poses like Tree Pose or Eagle Pose challenge and improve stability, an often overlooked aspect for runners. Better balance can enhance proprioception, reducing the chances of trips, falls, or missteps, especially on uneven terrains.

9. Stress Reduction: Running is, in itself, a stress-relieving activity. However, the combination of running and yoga can be especially potent in managing and reducing stress, thanks to the calming effects of yogic practices.

Incorporating Yoga into Running Routines: Runners don’t necessarily need to commit to a lengthy yoga session daily. Even integrating 15 to 20 minutes of focused yoga practice post-run can bring about noticeable benefits. With a combination of dynamic stretches and calming poses, runners can tailor their yoga sessions based on their needs and the demands of their running schedule.

In conclusion, the union of running and yoga offers a holistic approach to fitness, emphasizing both exertion and recovery, strength and flexibility, endurance and mindfulness. For runners looking to elevate their performance and overall well-being, stepping onto the yoga mat might be the next best move.

Check out the links below from some amazing runner bloggers and see some more awesome yoga stretches you can do to keep your body limber while running!

If you run, do you do yoga stretches? Are you more of a cardio person, or a low key workout kind of person?

If you like these Stretches, you will love these posts:


Tuesday 20th of March 2018

Runners are often reluctant to try yoga, their most common fear is that they are not flexible enough. It is not uncommon for those attending their first Yoga for Runners class to ask whether the room will be filled with lithe and flexible bodies, in spite of the class being advertised.


Tuesday 12th of December 2017

I am really active in running marathons- participated in 3 so far. I have been wanting to practice yoga classes lately but I am a little concerned. Some yoga positions I am not able to do because of a surgery I had 15 years ago.

Do you think if I informed a yoga instructor before starting classes, it would be ok? I just don’t want them to pick me out of the group if I am not bending far enough. Being corrected in public isn’t fun, especially if you have a medical condition that prevents you from doing some poses.


Wednesday 26th of October 2016

I have to make a deliberate effort to stretch - otherwise it doesn't happen until I need to do it!


Wednesday 26th of October 2016

I can't run without regular yoga! (Or else things start to go downhill... Haha) Pigeon pose is a daily one for me!

Janine HulDie

Wednesday 26th of October 2016

I keep saying I need to get more into yoga and have yet to in all honesty. So thank you for sharing all of the above and going to check out further now ;)