Yoga For Runners

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I have recently been asked to take yoga classes to encourage people to start running so I thought why not start myself. I haven’t been running since the summer days, which was obvious as soon as I started to pound the streets! Even though my cardiovascular system isn’t what it used to be I definitely felt stronger and more flexible from my dedicated yoga practice. Even though running is great for endurance it can be a major cause of repetitive stress injuries on the knees, hips and feet.  If the muscles are weak or a group of muscles are less developed than others it can result in poor alignment  leaving the legs to angle inward or outward instead of keeping in a straight line. From a yoginis perspective there are so many opportunities to apply different elements of yoga to running to prevent injuries occurring but also how to stay focussed whilst running .

Asanas, postures are probably the most obvious technique to apply. Regularly doing asanas will build strength which will provide stability to the joints which means less wear and tear on ligaments and tendons.  Increasing this strength will also improve running form by emphasising on alignment and helping to maintain an upright posture. Yoga also develops flexibility; especially in the hip joint as many asanas focus on hip openers which will encourage the legs to take a wider stride whilst running.  Once strength starts to develop in the muscles the body will use oxygen more efficiently and take less time to fatigue therefore enabling the body to run faster on flat surfaces and power more easily...