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The Flock
November 23, 2015

Yoga For Running Balance

erin taylor jasyoga oiselle running

Heyyo #chasethebird streakers! I love Oiselle’s November challenge because it highlights a simple truth: a little bit goes a long way to help you stay balanced when you’re consistent in your effort. In running and in life, it’s easy to get caught in a “more is more” mindset — more miles, more work, more multitasking… the problem is that sometimes all that extra expenditure of energy can leave you feeling more frazzled than fit.

So, as you endeavor to be consistent with short, daily bursts of movement this month, use the opportunity to simplify, rather than do more. Approach each workout as a well-deserved break, a pause, a wedge of space between you and the rest of your day, rather than making it another thing on your to-do list. In doing so, your workouts will help energize and uplift you — they’ll “Reset” you — rather than wearing you.

When it comes to yoga, balancing postures are some of the best for simplifying — for grounding you back into the moment. They immediately get you out of your thinking head and into your feeling body as they force you to correct toward equilibrium amid an unbalanced base. And, since running is a very long, fast series of single leg balances, this sequence provides super functional core and hip strengthening, and teaches your body to stay balanced while you run.

Step away from your desk or whatever you’re doing, hold each pose for 5+ deep breaths, and do the entire sequence on one side before switching to the other leg… Put a hand on the wall to help you balance if needed.

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Knee to Chest Balance

  1. Stand with your feet hip’s width apart and parallel.
  2. Exhaling, engage your core as you draw your navel toward your spine (as if you’re cinching up your waist).
  3. Keep your core engaged as you lift your right knee up to waist-height.
  4. Interlace your fingers around the front of your knee and draw the leg a bit higher, while keeping your hips level.

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Tree

  1. From Knee to Chest Balance…
  2. Slide the sole of your right foot onto the inseam of your left leg, resting it on your ankle, calf, or inner thigh (just keep it away from your knee).
  3. Rest your hands on your hips a reminder to keep them level.
  4. Gently press your right (bent leg) back while the hips stay squared forward (you’ll feel the muscles around your right hip/glute engage)

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Figure 4 Balance

  1. From Tree…
  2. Cross your right ankle just above your left knee.
  3. Bend your left knee and sit your weight back and down as much as possible.
  4. Keep resting your hands on your hips a reminder to keep them level.

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Quad Stretch

  1. From Figure 4 Balance…
  2. Straighten your left leg, lift your right leg, and grab your right foot behind you with both hands.
  3. Stand tall (try not to lean forward/back) as you gently press your foot back into your hands.

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