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Yoga for runners: sharpen stamina and soothe sore muscles

A simple yoga practice can help you become a more efficient, injury-free runner

person on yoga mat in child's pose

Sore legs after a hard speed session or challenging training week? Runners of all abilities can benefit from adding yoga to their regular routines, and you don’t need to tackle a complicated series of poses. Spending a few minutes in a single pose or a gentle sequence of postures is enough to reap rewards. Studies show that athletes who complement their training regime with yoga experience greater flexibility, reduced muscle tension, maximized range of motion and boosted mental focus and stamina.

We have one pose for you to sink into tonight (or right now)–and if you’re hungry for more, a simple flow tailored just for runners by Adriene Mishler. Mishler offers slow-paced, accessible yoga classes that give everyone, from beginners to experienced yogis, the chance to connect with their bodies and minds from their living rooms. Add some yoga to your weekend post-long-run–you’ll sleep like a baby and wake up ready to run again.

Malasana (squat) pose

Sometimes called garland pose, a deep squat like malasana helps release tension in your inner thighs, glutes and lower legs.

Malasana pose yoga for runners
Photo: Aparna Johri/Unsplash

This pose is easily modified for any level of flexibility. Begin by standing with the feet hip-width apart. Squat down and bring your arms in front of you, to the floor, or rest them on your thighs. If you’re having trouble, use a yoga block or stack of books under your bum or a folded blanket under your heels. If your heels are off the floor, another option is to widen the distance between your feet.

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