This session of yoga exercises for runners is a combination of beginner, intermediate and advance techniques that will aid and boost the runner. Yoga for runners is proven to enhance the abilities of the runner through meditation, techniques on how to breathe and exercise techniques.
The first exercise for Yoga for runners will begin from the Child’s Pose position by kneeling on the workout mat, spreading your knees wide on the mat and allowing your big toes to touch each other, push your hips down into your heels, work your fingertips forward, tuck your chin close to your chest and place your forehead on the mat.
This is one of many resting postures in yoga that is necessary to start your session by clearing your mind and conditioning your body for an inner body workout, which leads to an outer body workout experience. Allow yourself to let go of whatever stress or tension or tightness you brought to the mat with you. While relaxing, connect to your breathing rhythm, breathing through your nose only. This will help to warm and sooth your body while calming your mind preparing you for your workout flow.
This practice is going to focus on creating strength, stability and flexibility. It will help you to recover from running injuries or prevent any future injuries. It will help your body to be strong and supple.
Now from the Child’s Pose come into the Downward Dog (Down Dog), hands and feet flat on the mat and hips lifted up high. Breathe in Down Dog spreading your fingers apart, pressing your palms forward, draw your chest back, allow your shoulders to roll away from your ears and down your back. Feel your hips move high while feeling your heels move into the mat. Use your breath, with each inhale you lengthen to create space and during the exhale you go deeper. It is your breath that is your guide in yoga.
From Down Dog, walk to the top of your mat to Rag Doll placing your feet hip distance apart hedging forward from your hips folding your arms across each other, tucking your chin deep into your chest allowing your crown to become heavy. Breathe here, soften your knees, feel your heels pressing into the mat and feel the energy rise up the back of your legs, as your hips left high. Release your fingertips from the mat, place feet together with chin tucked to your chest, slowly roll up to a complete standing position one vertebrae at a time. Roll your shoulders back and down spinning your palms open toward your mat. Now feel the energy throughout your body, as you stand tall with every breath.
Raise your hands up as far as you can in the Tadasana position, fingers spread out wide. Allow your shoulders to relax in this position. Now breathe in deep then exhale pulling your elbows down to the small of your back and arch your back backward into a backbend. Now straighten your back up with your palms together high over your head.
Again breathe deep and exhale as you bend forward with your fingertips touching the mat, forehead to your shins. Inhale and halfway lift up where your back is parallel to the mat fingertips touching the mat, when you exhale move to the Chaturanga (pushup) position. Inhale with body in Chaturanga and upper body arched upward.
The tops of your feet should be pressing into the mat, fill your lungs, and then exhale moving back to the downward dog position lifting your hips high. Inhale and raise your right leg high, breathe for a minute in this position while rolling your ankle from left to right, opening and closing your toes. Draw your knee to your nose, which is good for both the asanas for plantar fasciitis and the asanas for hamstrings for developing the foot strength hedging forward with your shoulders directly over your palms and repeat this method until you no longer can. Now switch to the left leg and repeat the exercise.
Move to the Low Lunge position, which is an asanas for hamstrings and asanas for plantar fasciitis with one leg outstretched behind and the other forward but bent with the knee upward and fingertips on the mat creating a straight line from heel to the back of the head. Inhale and raise your hands over your head in the Crescent Lunge position with palms facing each other with fingers spread apart. Breathe deeply in the Crescent Lunge and exhale thoroughly. Drive your heel back and forth and feel the tension as it works the Achilles tendon, when you exhale hover your back knee one inch from the mat. This technique adds strength from the ankle to the hip joint. Now as you inhale straighten your leg back to the crescent position.
Move to the Warrior position, which is having your legs spread out with one foot facing forward flat on the mat and the other behind you sideways for support, with your arms spread out. Here, you will rotate your feet by simply turning them in place without lifting them, almost as if you are tearing your mat. You will end up facing the front to rear and back. This routine is also an excellent for both asanas for hamstrings and asanas for plantar fasciitis.
The half-moon is a balancing position where you will have your left foot flat on the mat and your left fingertips on the mat, your right leg will be extended out and up as high as you can get it. Then go back to the Warrior position and then back to the half-moon using your other side.
Practice these yoga exercises 2-3 times a week balancing the repetitive running on the body. You’ll work on flexibility and over-all strength, as it increases your posture as a runner. Yoga will also help to relax the mind, teach you how to control your breathing, help you to recover from running injuries, and give you an overall feeling of happiness.
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