Below yoga sequence should be used as a guide by yoga teachers to create their own yoga class plans
Yoga Sequence for Runners: Warm Up Yoga Sequence for Athletes
Most runners want strength in their legs in addition to the stamina they build through other forms of workout. The strength here is not just the fact the leg carries long distances, but gives them the feeling of being light yet strong in their legs and feet. The building of muscles at the calves, hamstrings, and the quadriceps should be aimed more towards facing any form of shock through injury with less wear and tear.
Through the following warm up yoga sequence, a runner can warm up the body and ensure the required muscles have expanded enough to help in running easily and handling shocks. The yoga sequence can be followed by anyone who is either passionate about running or by people who are runners (athletes) by profession. An athlete by profession should take the guidance of a good teacher, as the body of every individual runner is different and the strength and the weakness of the muscles of the runner need to be kept in mind.
Moving from a simple stretch in the hamstrings while seated, to the extended form of stretch at the hip and the entire lower body is kept in mind while forming this yoga sequence for runners.
Yoga Sequence for Runners: Warm Up Yoga Sequence for Athletes: Yoga Poses, Cues, Steps, and Breathing instructions
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A. Seated in Dandasana, stretch the legs out in front of you, relax the breath and sit straight.
B. Bring the feet close to you and sit in Bound Angle Pose or Baddha Konasana. Keeping the spine straight, raise the left leg up and bring the left knee into your left elbow and the left foot into your right elbow and place the leg high up and close to your chest with an inhalation.
C. Exhale bringing the leg close to your chest and feel the stretch at the lower hamstrings of the left leg.
D. By placing the leg bent at the knee within your elbows the stretch go deeper at the hamstring.
E. Start the deep breathing and as the exhalation happens, bring the leg closer to your chest and close your eyes and enjoy this stretch. Stay here for 6 breaths.
F. This stretch will help in creating expansion of the hamstrings which generally go stiff very fast after the running. Opening of these muscles will also bring less injury and with give the entire leg the required strength to run.
A. Release the left leg from the pose in Janu Sirsasana, and stretch the legs out in front of you and relax the spine with normal breathing.
B. Inhale and bring the left leg bent at the knee and place the left foot close to the perennial and stretch the other leg out straight.
C. Exhale completely and raising your arms above your head with another inhalation, exhale and bend forward and bring the fingers interlocked behind your feet and place the head close to the knee and exhale completely.
D. Stay here for 6 breaths and feel the stretch at the hamstrings and at the back of the knees. The stretching of these muscles is very essential for every runner.
E. Release the pose and bring the body to rest stretching the legs out in front of you and keep the spine pushed in a bit by placing the palms on the floor behind you and looking up.
A. This pose is a must for all runners or for all kinds of athletes. Moving from Janu Sirsasana, open the legs wide as per your comfort.
B. Inhale and keep the back straight and take your mind to the stretch at the inner thighs and take a few breaths here.
C. Now inhale and raising the body upwards, stretch the arms above your head and turning your hip towards the left side , go forward with the arms and reach for the left foot with your hands and place the head at the knee.
D. Exhale completely at this pose and reach for the feet deeper as you exhale. Make sure the hip is turned a bit and the right leg remains stretched out sideways.
E. Stay in this pose for about 6 breaths and feel the stretch at the lower back and hip, at the hamstring and at the back of the knee.
F. This pose helps in opening the hamstring to its maximum, but make sure there is no over doing of the stretch, as it is essential not to over do the warm up asanas as it could get really stiff for running.
A. Moving the body from the left to the centre continue the stretch and bring the entire body towards the right side and as you exhale reach for the right foot with the hands and place the forehead at the knees.
B. Stretching from the left side and then to the right side is essential as this would also help in the opening of the hips and the lower back.
C. Feel the stretch at the hamstrings and stay here for about 6 breaths. Make sure the stretch goes deeper with every exhalation.
D. Awareness of the body is essential as we should not over do the stretch.