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Yin Yoga for the front and back of the legs

Style
Level
Duration
Muscle groups
iliopsoas, quadriceps, hamstrings, and calf muscles

Yin Yoga is perfect for runners. It keeps your tendons, ligaments and joints flexible, and healthy. Flexible tendons and ligaments will prevent you getting injured. In this Yin Yoga class we focus on the front and back of the legs.

Yin yoga is a special form of yoga. Instead of targeting the muscles, we target our connective tissue. That’s why we don’t do any warming up. We want our muscles to be cold. That way a big part of the stretch will be done by our tendons. That’s also why we only do a minimum stretch.

Forgiving

Tendons, and ligaments have to be stretched as well. Not too far, just a little. Just like muscles, they will become inflexible if we don’t work them. Having some flexibility in your tendons and ligaments will make them more forgiving when you’re running.

Especially on trail runs it’s nice to be flexible. We slip and slide a lot. We change direction quickly, sometimes mid air, to find a better foot placement We jump over rocks, slough through bog, trip over tree roots and so on. The stiffer your muscles, tendons and ligaments, the greater the risk of injury.

Having said that, you don’t want to be too flexible. A certain stiffness in your ligaments, especially the ones in your knees and ankles, is helpful to maintain good posture. If you’re too flexible, it means your muscles have to work harder to compensate, and you’ll have to do more strength training.

'Yin yoga is a special form of yoga. Instead of targeting the muscles, we target our connective tissue'

John Kraijenbrink

Yin Yoga class for runners

I will write a separate article about all the benefits of Yin Yoga for runners. I promised you a couple of weeks ago, and one of these days I’ll sit down to do it. But let’s focus on this class for now. In this class I guide you through a practice for your iliopsoas, quadriceps, hamstrings and calves. In short the muscles of the front and back of your legs.

We’ll do the muscles on the side of your legs in a separate class. That way you can choose to do one or two classes, depending on how much time you have.

I like short classes. I see them as the building blocks of my training. Depending on how much time I have during the day, I add one, two or three flexibility or strength blocks to my training. Yin Yoga often being one of them. 

Okay, that’s it for now. Enough said. Let’s do yoga.

 

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