6 Yoga Poses Every Runner Must Know

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6 Yoga Poses Every Runner Must Know

I keep trying to get Rhett and Reina to learn “Downward Dog” on command.  So far this is all I’ve gotten out of them.



funny dogs.

I envision them looking like this…

(Source – Leeann Carey Yoga)

I can dream. Smile

In all seriousness, let’s talk yoga.

I’ve told you before how running and yoga goes hand in hand for me.  If I run, I must do some yoga or I end up hurt.  It’s that simple.  I’ve battled ankle and hip issues since I started running, both of which I keep in check *fingers crossed* now with yoga.

I might have given up running long ago and I never would have ran the Chicago Marathon if I did not figure out how to stretch my tight runners muscles.

When I’m running a lot I make sure I have time to do my favorite yoga DVD’s like Rodney Yee Daily Yoga or Christine Felstead Yoga for Runners (Basic & Intermediate.)  They make my legs happy.

But a lot of times, some simple yoga stretches go a long way!

I am hardly a yogi, (I’d really like to be one day,) but I have picked up some basic moves that you can add to your stretching routine that can really make a difference!

6 Yoga Poses Every Runner Must Know

1. Downward Dog

Downward Dog is one of those poses that really makes a big difference.  It stretches out the entire backs of your legs and can increase your core and upper body strength.  

You can get a better stretch by lengthening your back and lifting your core.  I find this pose helps my legs and ankles and helps shin splints.

Here is a good description of Downward Dog from the Yoga Journal.

2. Pigeon Toe


This pose is a huge help for my hips.  It’s a must do after I run.  You can swing your leg into a lunge from downward dog and then slide into this pose.

Here is a good description of Pigeon Toe from the Yoga Journal.

3. Double Pigeon or Fire Log Pose



I discovered this pose on the second Christine Felstead DVD.  It takes the stretch of the pigeon toe even farther.  It seems to really help that nagging hip issue.  If my hips are really tight my knees are really hard to push down.  If I work on it, they will loosen up again.

Here is a good description of Double Pigeon from the Yoga Journal.

4. Reclining Big Toe Pose



Get an inexpensive yoga strap and stretch away.  This is such a good way to release your hamstrings.  I also pull my leg just a few inches toward my body to stretch the IT band and outer hip.  Feels so good!

Here is a good description of the Reclining Big Toe Pose

5. Reclined Spinal Twist



This is another really good one for the hips and back.

Here is a link to a good description of the Reclined Spinal Twist

6. Reclining Bound Angle Pose



This stretch is probably best saved for once you get home and not in mixed company, but it can really help tight hips!

Here is a link to a good description of the Reclining Bound Angle Pose



What yoga move would you add to the list?

Do you like yoga?

By | 2017-08-15T14:04:28-04:00 November 13th, 2013|Fitness, Newbie Running, Running, Yoga|6 Comments


  1. Agness of Fit Travelling April 11, 2017 at 4:04 pm - Reply

    I love yoga and these poses are simply amazing, Julie! Amazing post!

    • JulieWunder April 16, 2017 at 5:59 pm - Reply

      Thanks Agness! Hope you are having a great weekend.

  2. […] Just do it.  It may not be as flashy or as obviously fun as running, but even a few simple moves can keep your legs limber enough to keep you from getting injured.  I would not have made it to my marathon start line without yoga. Read this post on Yoga Poses Every Runner Must Know. […]

  3. Jackie November 20, 2013 at 5:01 pm - Reply

    I liked this article, it made yoga not seem so scary. I run a lot and need to start working on my flexibility. I’m definitely going to try your suggestions.

  4. JulieWunder November 15, 2013 at 12:47 pm - Reply

    I really like yoga. Before I got into it, I thought it would be a waste of time, but I feel it really helps me. It balances out the stress running puts on my body. I would give it a try!

  5. Jaime November 13, 2013 at 6:31 pm - Reply

    I must try to be better at stretching – and that’s what these poses are to me. I’ve never been a yoga person. I’ve done pilates in the past, and there are yoga moves that I do (stretches, I like to call them) but I’m SO terrible at following through! Maybe I should take up yoga (or pilates) now that I’m not running so much?

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