6 Essential Stretches for Runners

6 Essential Stretches for Runners hover background

Feb 05


To stretch or not to stretch. That is the question. But it shouldn’t be a question anymore. Stretching before and after your run is vital for preventing injury and improving performance. Stretching helps increase blood and oxygen flow to your muscles, tendons and ligaments which will boost flexibility, reduce soreness and speed up recovery.

Keep your muscles and joints healthy with these 6 essential stretches for runners:

Hamstring Stretch

Sit on the ground and extend your left leg. Move your right foot in towards your inner thigh so that it touches the top part of your left leg. Lean forward toward your left foot, trying to reach for your toes.

Hold for 20-30 seconds and repeat with the other leg.

Calf Stretch

Stretch out your calf muscles by standing close to a wall with your right foot behind your left foot. While keeping your right leg straight, start to bend your left leg forward. Don’t bend your right knee and keep your right foot planted firmly on the ground pointing straight ahead.

Straighten your back and hold the pose for 20-30 seconds. Switch and repeat with the other leg.

Quad Stretch

Stand straight and pull one leg behind you with the corresponding hand. Keep your knee pointing downward while you do this stretch. If needed, you can use a chair to balance yourself.

Hold for 30 seconds then repeat on the other side. 

Gluteal Muscle Stretch

To stretch out your “glutes”, lay on your back with both arms flat on the ground alongside your body. Lift your legs up and place your right foot across your left knee, pulling your right leg up toward your chest.

Hold for 15-25 seconds and then repeat with the left leg. 

Groin Stretch

Sit up straight with your left leg bent at the knee and resting against the ground. Cross your right leg over your left knee and hold for 15-25 seconds and repeat on the other side. 

Hip Flexor Stretch

While standing on your left leg, raise your right knee as high as you can. Repeat with your left leg after you return your right foot down to the floor.

Alternate legs for about 30-60 seconds. Do three sets. 

It’s good to give our bodies a break from excessive pounding from exercises like running every once in a while. Luckily, there are low-impact exercises that are easier on the body—especially your joints.  Check out these 8 low impact exercises during your next running break.

If you are suffering from pain that is preventing you from an active lifestyle, contact us today!


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