Running is one of the best sports that you can involve yourself in. It’s a sport that is open to people from all ages and walks of life. When you watch a marathon, you will see all types of runners all striving towards the same direction with just one goal. That is, to cross the finish line.
It’s a sport that you don’t necessarily need fancy equipment to engage in. Basically, all you need is a good pair of well fitted running shoes (that get expertly fit from your local running store like Universal Sole. You can throw in a few accessories like to improve your performance but these are optional. Running rewards you with better health. It’s an activity recommended by doctors to people with Cardio conditions and typically, it improves blood circulation so it resolves a lot of health issues.
If you run a lot, you will need to build your endurance to withstand running long ranges in a marathon or competition. You will also need to condition your leg muscles so they won’t give way when you experience tiredness or cramps. The best way to condition a runner’s body before or after a competition is to some Yoga.
There are at least 6 yoga poses that are used as conditioning exercises for runners. Once you master these poses, you can practice them at home or before any run. If you haven’t tried Yoga, you can enlist in a Yoga class and receive the proper instructions on how to do these poses. You can also get the services of a yoga teacher training overseas. Getting mentored by an Indian Yogi will be one of the best experiences you will have.
The following are the best yoga sequences for strengthening and stretching the muscles that every runner should know. Please consult a physician before starting any new and/or strenuous exercise. Also, if you are new to yoga, always consult a professional about proper techniques for poses. Get ready with your Yoga mats!
1) Supported Backward Bend
You will have to stand up straight with your feet parallel to the ground. Keep the hip-width distance apart. Place your hands on your lower back with your fingers pointing to the ground. Look upwards as if reaching for the sky with your chest up, opening the shoulders and without crunching your lower back. Hold this pose for 30 seconds. Just do 1 set of this pose.
2) Shoulder Openers
For this pose, you will have to stand up straight with both feet parallel on the ground. Interlace your fingers behind your back with the palms touching if possible. Then, bend your elbows and place your knuckles on your lower back near the sacrum. Attempt to make your elbows meet behind your back. Hold the pose for 30 seconds. You only have to do this once.
3) Intense Side Stretch
This exercise if perfect for loosening tight hamstrings. Start by standing up straight with your feet apart with a hip-width distance. Step the left foot back to a distance 3 to 4 feet behind you. Keep the heel of your right foot aligned with the heel of your left foot. Allow the left foot to be able to turn around in a 45 degree angle. Place the hands on the hips then square your hipbones with the front edge of your mat. Bring your left hip slightly forward and then draw your right hip slightly backwards. With your core engaged to keep the spine length, start to hinge at your hips and fold forward. Allow your torso to melt over your right thigh. Keep your thighs engaged throughout the pose and release the top of your head towards the mat. Let the arms release towards the floor. Hold this pose for 30 seconds while breathing deeply. Repeat only once and switch to the other side.
4) Half-Split with Flexed Foot
You’ll have to begin with the crescent lunge. While on the ground, bend your left knee while you stretch your right leg behind your back. Carefully drop your right back knee and stretch your toes. Place both hands on top of the front left thigh and alight your shoulder over the hips. Let the top of your back thigh melt downward. Hold this pose for 30 seconds then switch to the other leg. Do 1 set of this pose.
5) Reclined Bound Angle
This pose is performed while lying on your back. The sequence will provide your body the needed release for the groin and hips and helps you de-stress after a marathon. Lie on the back with the knees up on the sides of the mat. Join the soles of your feet together until they touch. With this pose, bring your heels in close to your body as you can. Make sure the back is kept on the floor the whole time. Place one of your hands over your heat and the other hand on your belly. Hold this pose for 1 minute while you breathe deeply.
6) Seated Figure Four
Sit with your left knee bent towards your chest with your foot flat on the floor as close to your butt as much as possible. The arms must be placed behind you with your fingertips pointing forward. Then cross your right ankle over your left thigh.
Turn your hands around and push your chest forward. This will bring your chest into your legs. Your back must be kept straight. Hold the pose for 30 seconds before switching sides. Do 1 set of this pose.
About the author (USOLE Guest Blogger): Jessica Max is a passionate writer for www.topicexchange.com (keyword - better health). She loves to write on home remedies, beauty, health and food which helps people in a every day life.
UNIVERSAL SOLE - a grass roots running events company (which had roots of close to 20 years as a running specialty retailer) offering information on running shoes, gear, accessories & overall fitness trends.