Yoga for runners

Nike will release Breaking2 on National Geographic in the US and Europe on Sept. 20. The one-hour documentary showcases Nike’s efforts to recruit and train three athletes from Kenya, Ethiopia and Eritrea for a year with the best equipment and training techniques than money can buy to attempt to break the two-hour marathon limit.

Although the record was ultimately not broken, Nike shared in a press release that this was not viewed as a failure but rather a testament to the wonders of the human body to perform under exceptional circumstances and “not making it” is actually one of the most heroic and amazing athletic feats of all time.

Although yoga and running may seem world’s apart, the two activities may complement each other to help marathon runners improve their performance and time, and longevity in the sport. More than just being a good stretch, yoga for runners can help athletes improve their performance and keep their bodies in top shape in ways that other exercises cannot.

In an interview with Active, Denise Thompson, owner of, said that yoga for runners fills in the gaps where typical training may fall short.

“Unlike lifting weights, the practice of yoga engages major and minor muscle groups synergistically through a broad range of motions, and also creates space within the body by lengthening muscles and ultimately improving flexibility. Poses require focus and full body engagement, creating a strong sense of balance from head to toe,” she said.

Many coaches and athletes also attest that yoga for runners can help, not only with injury prevention, but also with proper self-assessment to identify potential injuries before they impede performance.

“Yoga creates a stronger sense of body awareness and teaches practitioners the art of listening to the body,” Thompson said in the same article.

Runner, Lauren Fleshman, who was a two-time national outdoor 5000-meter champion, told Runners World that adding yoga to her training routine help prepare her for long endurance runs which can be taxing on the body.

“Yoga helps me control my emotions while I’m in discomfort on the road. Enduring an intense pose is a lot like enduring a long run or tempo run,” she said.

Whether you are a weekend 5K marathon runner, or a record-breaking athlete, yoga for runners can be a valuable tool to staying active in the running longer while maintaining peak condition.


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