Yoga and running may not seem like they go together, but there are a lot of ways that runners can benefit from practicing yoga. From stretching and warming up, to recovering from a long run, yoga can help runners in a variety of ways.
Yoga for Recovery
First, you can use yoga techniques after your run to help your legs back and shoulders. By using a few simple yoga poses, you can regain motion, reduce swelling, and improve circulation to advance your recovery.
Once you’ve showered and rested for a bit, here are the main poses that will help you:
- The Squat: This helps your hamstrings and lower back.
- Child’s Pose: This also helps your back and hamstring.
- Prone Twist: This can help improve circulation in your back.
- Back-Bend: This helps you relax and improves circulation through your legs.
- Side Bend: This can help improve circulation in your legs and lowers tension in your hips.
- Leg Prop: Finally, this can help you stretch your legs and back, while also improving circulation.
The bottom line is that yoga can help stretch you out, as well as improve circulation to speed recovery.
Yoga for the Mind
But that’s not all – yoga can be very beneficial for the mind, especially for long distance runners. A big part of running long distances is mental – using tricks to keep your mind engaged while you are running. Yoga is a great way to teach your mind these tricks.
For example, a big part of yoga is breathing correctly while you are holding a pose. The same applies to running – making sure that you are breathing correctly so you don’t lose your breath. Remember, being out of breath is because you aren’t breathing correctly, so slow down and focus.
Finally, yoga is about focus and determination, and clarity when holding a pose. The same is true for running, especially during long distances. You can use the same principals from yoga, like asana and mindfulness exercises, and carry those with you when you run. You can even practice some of those exercises at mile markers to help you focus.
Do you use Yoga for recovery? What are your favorite poses?