Pilates for Runners

images (1)Many runners dedicated themselves so completely to that sport that tend to shut other workouts out just a bit. The truth is, though, certain other workout disciplines can be used to enhance and strengthen your body in ways that will improve your runs. There’s nothing wrong at all with a little cross training, and when the workout will help take your running to the next level, it can be a really good idea to add it to the mix. Pilates is a discipline that can make you strong in ways that will enhance your running and, best of all, just might keep you from injuring yourself. Learn a few basic Pilates moves and do them at home a few times a week. You’ll see a difference in your running.

 

Swan

The swan forces you to engage all of your leg muscles, which is useful for obvious reasons. It also opens your chest which helps with breathing capacity. Lie on your stomach on a yoga mat. Place your hands on either side of your chest and push up off the floor while keeping your legs on the floor. Stretch your chest and back and squeeze your shoulder blades together to deepen the stretch. Then, slowly rock forward and lower your stomach and chest back to the mat, lifting your legs behind you as you do. Keep your toes pointed and your legs together. This will stretch and strengthen all of the muscles in the back of the body, from head to toe.

 

Side Kick Kneeling

This move helps to strengthen your core which will improve your balance and stamina. Kneel on the mat and lean to the right, placing your right hand flat on the mat like a kickstand. Bend your left arm and place your hand behind your head, while pointing your left leg out to the side. Lift your leg to the height of your hip then sweep that leg up and down and forward and backwards 10 times each. Switch sides and repeat.

 

Corkscrew

The corkscrew works so many muscles including your core, glutes, obliques and legs all while stretching and opening your hips. Lie on your back on the mat and pull your knees into your chest. Then point your legs up to the ceiling, making sure to hold your legs together tightly. Reach your legs over to the right, not letting them flop or fall over, but lowering them slowly, squeezing your thighs together. Allow your left hip to lift from the floor a bit. Bring your legs back center before repeating the same move on the left. After you’ve done both side bring your knees to your chest again before beginning another rep. Do 10 reps total.

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