How Yoga Can Help Your Running

July 30th, 2017

by Michael Ryan


Numerous research articles have revealed the importance of yoga in combating stress, easing pain and helping people stick to a rigorous exercise regime. However, another notable benefit of yoga that has recently becoming popular especially among athletes, is the many benefits it offers for running. Added flexibility and strength that runners accomplish from yoga strengthens their hamstrings, quads, hip flexors and the core. This is why many of them advocate doing yoga for running.


Practicing yoga reduces the risk of injury for athletes who compete in running events. Runners can incorporate yoga in their training or workout sessions to relax their minds and calm stressed nerves. This helps them become both mentally and physically strong during running events. Here are a few major benefits of yoga for running:



Stress-Free Running Sessions

Tension can be a runner’s biggest downfall. While most runners are great at working on their stamina and controlling their breath, they pay little attention on relaxing their minds. This means you may get tired easily and are not able to perform your other duties with a running session. Pranayama exercises along with conscious breathing offer tremendous benefits to the nervous systems.


Yoga helps to relax the entire body during a running session to reduce fatigue or strain. Relaxation allows runners to burn energy at a higher rate. The resulting outcomes give a greater sense of freedom to help runners enjoy all other physical and mental activities.



Reduces Physical Stress

Running is a harsh exercise that puts every muscle in the body to the test. Runners benefit from high intensity and cardio workouts to build their stamina and support physical strength. But many athletes do not recover from an injury or chronic pain resulting from a harsh training session or a running event. Runners encounter tightening, shortening and pounding of the muscles. This is why they need enough time to recuperate from an event or an injury. Yoga not only prepares the mind to deal with a stressful injury, it also supports the muscles in our body to help them recover better after an injury.

Muscle rigidity is common among runners as runners invariably train in a specific manner by repeating the same exercise actions over and over again. While this form of repetitive training works well to train them, it also causes balancing problems or causes the muscles to become brittle. Running can make your muscles tight, inflexible and brittle. Brittle muscles cause the joints to rub and grind and make them vulnerable to injury. As our muscles are naturally designed to act as the body’s shock observers, they should ideally be supple and soft. This is why you should perform yoga for running.


Not only does it focus on balancing your strength and increasing your range of motion, it also trains your mind and body. Different yoga postures move your body through gravitational dimensions to coordinate your breath with every subtle movement you make. When you practice yoga for running regularly, it conditions your body to respond better to all movements you make during running and stabilize your postures. Yoga works on several different dimensions of a runner’s body and is beneficial than most of the one-dimensional workouts that runners perform.



Boosts Confidence

Since yoga helps an individual to become aware of his body. It teaches the cultivation of confidence and wisdom to the human mind. When you develop a better understanding of your body and how it works, you become more confident. Yoga helps you listen to the signals that your body sends to your mind. Since running is known to produce a large quantity of endorphins, these ‘feel good’ chemicals serve as nature’s way of fighting depression and stressful events. Yoga helps to make the most of all productive hormones and chemicals that are produced by the body to support our physical and mental well-being.



More Energy

Awareness can miraculously change the way you approach your daily workouts and events. Yoga teaches runners to take every moment as it comes and to give their best to accomplish greater results. Runners may be experiencing fluctuation in their emotional, physical and mental states. However, the calmness you achieve with yoga helps to give you more positive energy to incorporate into your daily workout, training sessions and running events.

Your mind is more focused towards every movement of your body. This gives you an increased amount of energy as you do not workout mindlessly, ignoring what your mind is signaling to your body.


Final Thoughts

Unlike other conventional exercises, yoga cannot be easily mastered in a couple of weeks. It takes time, patience and sheer will to practice yoga for achieving the best results in running. Focus on your every movement and listen to what your body is saying to know your strong and weak parts. Only then will you be able to benefit from yoga for running. 

Keywords: Yoga, Running, Technique, Training, Endurance

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