Yoga for Runners and Athletes Recovery | Flow Yoga (15 min)

– Hi, I’m Katherine with YYoga. This is Harlan. I’m gonna share with a yoga practice that’s great for athletes after a workout. So you’re gonna come into a child’s pose. So when you finish a workout, your muscles are usually quite tight, so you may need some props for this. You grab blocks, grab
pillows, whatever you need to bring the floor closer to you. Then when you take a deep inhale, slowly exhale, come forward, and fold. Your head may touch the
floor, your forehead down, your forearms down. Hips might be elevated from your heels. That case, you just
relax here and breathe. You can also tuck your toes under if you get any cramps in the feet which is totally normal after running. Sometimes, hamstrings cramp after. Just breathe into this. Good, and then slowly come forward. Place the palms down and slide
into a tabletop position. So you’re gonna start to move
your spine with your breaths. So when you inhale, lift the belly up, bring chin to the chest. Exhale, melt between your shoulder blades. You want your shoulders right
over top of your wrists, fingers spread out nice and wide. Inhale, lift the belly. It’s called cat pose, really
opens up the back of the body. Exhale into cow. You’re melting your
belly towards the floor. Shoulder blades on your
back opens your chest. Do one more. (Harlan inhales loudly) (Harlan exhales loudly) That’s it. Inhale, come to a neutral spine. Gonna feel your hands spread very evenly, even weight between the fingers. Inhale the right arm forward
towards the center of the room. Turn the palm in. Then as you exhale, left leg
straight back behind you. We’re gonna just work
into some core strength. Lift the ribs up and in. The back leg, not too high. Even lower is better so
the back leg’s straight. Good, slowly place your hand
and knee back down to the mat. Inhale the left arm forward
and your right leg back, so just activating the
core before we practice. Stretch out through your fingers. You can draw the toes towards the floor to root out through the
back heel a little more and feel that the back leg’s steady. Straight, ribs are lifting up and in. As you exhale, place your
hand and knee back down towards the mat. Slowly bring the right foot forward and place your right foot on to the mat. That’s it, and then blocks are great to place underneath your
hands and fingertips. So after a run, the quads tend to be quite tight, hip flexors. Suspend a little bit of time
here breathing into your legs. Front knee directly over the ankle. Tuck your back toes under. Keep breathing and as you’re here, you wanna start to stretch into the legs. The front of the left quadricep tends to get tight from training. I find my back knee, sometimes, is tender so you can always put a
nice soft pillow underneath. Hands to your right thigh and then bring your arms up to the sky. Good, take some breaths here. We’re gonna open up the left hip flexor so you can catch on to the
left wrist with this right hand and slowly bend over to the right and tuck your front ribs down. Lift your chin so you can
take some nice big breaths. Inhale, come back to center. As you exhale, place the
hands down on the blocks and then to the floor. Yeah, and to tabletop. Good. And then step your left foot forward. Good, use the blocks. Elevate, bring the floor up closer to you, and breathe into your
right quadricep hip flexor. We’re gonna pad this back
knee just to keep a balance. Nice, so you can bring your
hands to your left thigh. Inhale the arms up to the sky, and then catch on to the right wrist. Big inhale to first create some space, and then slowly bend
towards me, to the left. Keep the front knee
tracking straight forward. When we run or we’re
working out on a bike, you’re contracting in the hip flexor so you wanna breathe some
space into the abdominals, psoas, hip flexor, to open it, expand. Inhale, come back to center. When you exhale, touch your
hands down towards the blocks and come to tabletop pose. Good, from tabletop position,
bring your right foot forward. So the same shape we were just doin’, we’re gonna use the blocks and straighten your front leg a little. So this can be intimidating
when you see in yoga practice, people going to full splits. You don’t need to do that. You lift the sole of your foot up and straighten the front leg a little bit. You can walk your left leg back more and, of course, you need a pillow. Please do put one under, yes. Make sure the hips stay square forward, the side body’s even, and that
you’re smiling, of course, ’cause it’s definitely
can be uncomfortable but you’ll feel better after. Inhale to come forward. Place your hands down. Sweep your right leg around,
back to the tabletop pose. That’s it, and step
your left foot forward. Lift your back knee. I’m just gonna very slowly start to bring a little bit of length through the left hamstring by sending the sitting
bones back wider apart. Lift your lower belly. Lift your left foot up. You can even go up on fingertips. Just for some more height, straight arms, straight arms, yeah, and breathe here. Lots of space. Good, come back down on to your hands. Come to tabletop position. From here, we’re gonna come forward and stand up on your feet. Walk your feet forward. Hang upside down in an
Uttanasana forward fold. Set the feet apart. Let your head go down. That’s it, and breathe
into the back of your body. We may need blocks,
especially from working out. Hamstrings tight. When I first started yoga,
I could not touch my toes so I knew I had to practice. So blocks, bend your knees
as much as you need to. Relax your head down. And it’s not important
that you touch your toes. You just start to breathe
some space into your body and relax. Bring your hands on your
hips, elbows up to the sky. Inhale, slowly rise up to stand. And exhale, relax your arms down. Okay, turn and face
the length of your mat. We’re gonna step out wide. Bring your arms up parallel to the floor. For measurement, we’re
gonna bring our feet right below the wrist. You go a little bit wider, great. Put your right toes towards me. The right heel, align it
to the back middle arch so externally, the
external rotators get tight when we’re running in this
forward motion, linear. So you’re gonna open your hips, bend your right knee as much as you can keeping your left leg straight. Shaking is completely normal ’cause you’re tired as
well from your workout, but we wanna open up your hips. So it won’t be here too long. Sit a little bit deeper. Inhale, flip your right palm up, open up your chest and the
right side of your body. So the psoas, hip flexor,
soften your ribs a bit. Lift your chin, you can look up. Really stretch out all the way out. You wanna lengthen through your fingers. Yeah, push through your feet. Inhale, come back to center. Bring your hands on your hips
just to mellow out the arms. Straighten your front leg, right toes turn in,
left toes turn forward. You can take your arms up. The great thing about this pose also is you’re building some strength as you’re opening your hips. You bend your left knee. We wanna feel that the front thigh is gonna be eventually
parallel to the floor but the front knee is tracking forward. Good, this looks great. Flip your palm up and reverse it back, and you lightly touch the back thigh. It can be higher. You don’t have to go so low
or you go a little bit lower. Stay in your lunge, but breathe lots of length
and space through the armpit all the way through the wrist
through your fingertips. Inhale, come back to center. Slowly straighten the left leg
with your hands on your hips. Turn your left toes in. Walk your feet together and
stand for a moment, feel that. Okay, let’s face the front of your mat. We’re gonna come into a squat, so probably my least favorite pose ’cause my ankles are so
stiff and tight from running but we need to do the ones
that we don’t like, right? So we come into a squat. Hands on the thighs to start
and take your feet wider. You can go even out, off the mat. Yeah, wide apart. So you start to open your
hips and sit down, sit down. Now, Harlan, hasn’t done
a run yet this morning, maybe later. But he can sit comfortably. A lot of us runners will
probably stay up here, just for a little bit. You can also do this. I’m gonna get you to lift
your hips up, Harlan. Walk your feet in closer and lift your heels. You can put blocks underneath your heels and this is a great way
to open your ankles. Yeah, and just sit and breathe here. Lift your chest. Just enjoy opening up through your feet, the arches of your feet, your ankles. Bring the weight back
a bit into the heels. Yeah, like that. Okay, bring your hands down to the floor. Lift your hips up
forward fold, Uttanasana. Bend your knees a lot. And in yoga, you’ll notice, every time you revisit a
posture, it gets a bit easier so we just practice. Relax your head down. Okay, I’m gonna get you to
come to sit on the floor. Cross your legs and sit, and then lie on your back. And I find after working
out, after running, it’s really important to lie down ’cause it relaxes your nervous system so the body starts to decompress. Bend both knees. Bring your feet flat to the floor. It’s accessible for
everybody to practice this to open your hips. You can bring your right foot on top of your left thigh, mm-hm. You may find the knee is in
this position, this shape, ’cause the hips are tight. We’re working them hard when
we’re running or working out. So flex the right foot a little bit. Yeah, and you can stay here. The shoulders are down. Back of your head down. Just breathe, and bring
awareness into your hips to start to get the shin to align
with your collar bones. And it might never go
there but that’s okay. You just go to where your body is today. Keep feeling that the
pelvis is even on the floor. You can keep all this. Slide your right hand through your legs. Bring your left knee in towards your body and you’re gonna interlace your fingers, yeah, and breath. You can also use props underneath
your foot if you need it. Couple big breaths. Your hips start to open. It feels really good, just to rest your body
down into the floor. Let’s release the block. Place the foot to the floor. Take the right leg off. Pause for a moment with the feet down. You can even bring your knees
together, the knees touch. Relax your hip flexors, the belly. You can even put your hands
on your belly in between and on the heart, okay. Open the knees. Draw your left knee on
top of the right thigh and just notice what side is
a little bit more restricted. And here, this is okay. You start to open. You can slide your left hand through. Catch the right hamstring,
yeah, so you got it. This is easy for Harlan. When you’ve done a run, this is not easy so you can always put
your foot on blocks, yeah. You can put it up against a wall. I find that’s amazing as well
to keep the foot on the wall. Then you can start to
feel that the pelvis is evenly placed onto the ground. You can lift your foot up, place your right foot back
down to the floor, yeah, and then lift your left leg off. Pause with your soles
of your feet to touch and your knees wide. Now, I love this pose to
open up the hip flexors, Baddha Konasana. Let’s put the blocks a bit higher, yeah. So this is what it might
look like to start. Feet together, soles of your feet. The knees on the blocks. Rest your one hand on the
belly, one hand on the heart. (Harlan breathes loudly) So if you don’t have blocks
to support your knees, you can use your pillows. You can also roll up some clothes. If you just finished a run and you wanna practice in the park, you can put your running
shows underneath your legs. I’ve done that before, and it’s nice just to relax on the grass. And you can relax your knees where they go just to place them, something underneath. And then lift your knees up. Bring the feet so they’re hip width apart, and then stretch your legs
out straight, that’s it, and relax your arms beside your body. The best part of the
practice, final Shavasana. So you can open up your
legs, open up your arms. Close your eyes. Take a deep breath in through
your nose and out your mouth. (Harlan exhales loudly) This is probably one of the most challenging poses for athletes. I know it was for me when I first started. To lie still is challenging,
so it’s a practice. You close your eyes and you
practice stilling your body. And then eventually, when
your body is calm and still, then your mind can begin to relax. So the most beneficial pose for athletes. So I’m gonna leave
Harlan in this position. He looks so comfortable and relaxed. Thank you so much for practicing. I’m Katherine with YYoga. Namaste.


  1. Which sport does yoga support you with? ↓↓↓ (PS. Katherine is a marathon runner so hers is running!)

  2. Namaste

  3. Namaste

  4. OMG! Kat Moore, what a great and accessible sequence for athletes. More of this please!

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