Movement

How to stretch before running

Movement

How to stretch before running

Ready to run? Paige Jones, ACSM CES, an exercise physiologist at Piedmont Atlanta Fitness Center, has some pre-run stretching tips to help you prevent injury. Watch the video for proper technique.

Calf stretch

Place your left heel on the ground and toe against a wall. Stand tall and keep hips over the feet. Push forward with your right leg. Hold the stretch for 30 to 45 seconds, then relax. It should feel mildly uncomfortable, but not painful. Do the same stretch with your other leg.

Piriformis stretch

Sit down. Place right ankle over your left knee. One hand on your ankle, the other on your knee. Keep your right lower leg parallel with the ground and your spine tall. Bend forward from your hips as far as you comfortably can. Hold stretch for 30 to 45 seconds, then relax. Do the same stretch with your other leg.

Hip flexor stretch

Start with left knee on the floor and legs at 90 degrees, with spine tall. You will do an anterior pelvic tilt by scooping your tailbone under you and hips backward. For more of a stretch, lean forward, keeping your tailbone scooped. Hold for 30 to 45 seconds, then relax. Do the same stretch with your other leg.

I.T. band stretch

Start with feet shoulder-width apart. Step left leg back. Keep hips square as possible. Place right hand on your hip and left hand straight up. Keep spine tall. Bend over to your right, pushing your hips out to your left. Hold for 30 to 45 seconds, then relax. Do the same stretch with your other leg.

Hamstring stretch

Start in standing position with feet shoulder-width apart. Extend right leg out with heel on the ground and toes pointing straight up. Sit your hips back. Extend and reach your right arm toward your right toe, keeping your right leg as straight as possible. Hold for 30 to 45 seconds, then relax. Do the same stretch with your other leg.

Once you're finished with your run, try these post-run stretches.

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