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As runners we often neglect to do the proper stretching after each run. Neglecting to properly stretch our muscles can result in unnecessary soreness or even injury.
We asked our experts to provide us with the best stretches for runners. Maria Davis, director & founder of Embodimove, provided us with the three best leg stretches for runners:
Improve Your Running with 3 Little Stretches
These 3 stretches will improve your running by keeping the 3 muscles used with excessive load flexible and supple. The forward thrust biomechanics of the runner uses these muscles to the limit of function. Protecting these muscles with stretching and care will prolong your running life. Enjoy and stay strong. Care for your body and your body will reward you too.
The first stretch is the quadriceps. Stand and touch wall or stationary object for balance. Grasp top ankle or forefoot behind. Pull ankle or forefoot to rear end. Straighten hip by moving knee backward. Hold stretch. Repeat with opposite side.
The Second stretch is Hip Flexor (Psoas) stretch. Kneel on right knee, with toes down, and place left foot flat on the floor in front of you, knee bent and aligned with ankle. Place hands on left thigh.
Press hips forward until you feel tension in the front of your right thigh. Hold for 30 seconds, then switch sides.
The Third Stretch is a Calf Stretch. Stand in a staggered lunge, left foot a full stride in front of right, feet hip-width apart, toes pointing straight ahead; place hands on hips. Bend left knee so it’s in line with left ankle; keep right leg straight, foot flat.
Press hips gently forward, feeling stretch in right calf while keeping right heel on ground (shown). Release, then repeat, with right knee (back leg) bent to stretch underlying calf muscle. Repeat for all reps, then switch legs and repeat both stretches on other leg.
There are many different stretches for runners. What is your favorite post-run stretch?
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