Whether you’re a seasoned marathon runner, just starting out, a speedy sprinter or a jog-around-the-blocker, it’s important to prevent injury and speed up recovery post-running through regular stretching.
Our Lead Therapist and qualified yoga teacher, Nadège, has put together this stretching regime that’s easy as post-run pie to build into your training program. Do these stretches regularly and you’ll feel and see the benefits in no time.
When running, your quads are working at their maximum to propel you forwards – a round of applause for them. It’s extremely important to stretch them before and after to help sustain mobility in the lower limbs and prevent injury.
If you’re a runner, or know one, then you’ll know that the Achilles tendon is prone to injury and that the rehab can be long, slow and painful. Stretching the calves, as shown above will help to maintain good mobilisation in the ankle and help prevent injury to the Achilles.
Your ankles take a beating when you run, especially if you choose to do it on hard ground. So, as long as you don’t suffer from hip pain, this is a great stretch to improve mobility in your ankles. Done properly and you’ll also give your outer calf muscles a good stretch too. Double whammy!
The adductor muscles, which sit by your hips, are in constant use – whether you’re walking or running. This deep, dropped stretch helps to prevent injury in the muscle itself and also avoid knee pain whilst maintaining healthy hips.
Achilles & Adductor stretch
Time to whip out your best frog impression. This move is great for opening up the hip area and stretching the Achilles tendon and adductors. If you can’t touch your heels to the floor use a block or towel to support them. This stretch will help increase the range of motion in the hips which is super important when running – no one wants to stiffen up when you’re upping your stride length.
Adductors & Hamstring stretch
If your hamstrings are too tight, your lower back will round so you’ll need to sit on a block or towel to keep the hips in the right position. This stretch helps to relieve tension in the mainly in the hamstrings, but also adductors. This pose will also help your back happy and healthy.
Our Lead Therapist, Nadège, loves this pose as it helps to stretch the tibialis anterior, which runs along the shin bone. When running this muscle is used to the absolute maximum when the foot pushes off the ground so it’s important to keep it stretched and in tip-top condition.
This is another great stretch for very tight hamstrings and ensures that your back will stay in the right position throughout the day. It also helps maintain the functionality of the hips and prevents lower back pain.
A variation of the above stretches, this stretch will keep your hamstrings in good nick and keep your back and hips healthy. Aim for your toes – if you can’t grab them, don’t worry. Just aim as far as you can.
Hamstring/ Hip opener
The perfect move to complement your “I’m with the band” t-shirt. This stretch, when performed with a resistance band, is great for reducing lower back pain. Why? Because it stretches your hamstrings and the psoas muscle – the deep-embedded hip muscle. It also increases flexibility in the legs and helps keep those precious knees healthy.
IT Band stretch
The IT band is important to stretch as it directly affects health of the knees and hip joints. It runs down the outer side of your leg, and it’s an oft-forgotten mass of tendons, so is definitely in need of some TLC. This stretch also targets the QL muscle in the back, which helps ease lower back pain if you experience it.
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