Any fitness nut knows that a surefire way for you to get injured is to fail to stretch properly before beginning a workout. This is especially true for runners. If you launch right into your jog without any stretching to loosen up the muscles, then you set yourself at a high risk of straining one of your muscles. And even if you don’t, then you’re still bound to feel very sore the next morning.
To get the muscles warm, loose, and ready for a workout, dynamic stretching is a must. In this article, we’ll introduce you to five of the best dynamic stretches that you should start implementing before your running workout.
1. High Knees
One of the best ways to start off your stretching routine is with a few sets of high knees. With this exercise, set your forearms at waist level, extending beyond your body, parallel to the ground.
Then, start jogging forward, with an exaggerated upswing of the knee on each step so that the knee makes contact with your forearm. This loosens up your hamstrings, quads, and glutes very well.
2. Walking Lunges
Another great exercise to stretch out the glutes is walking lunges. Simply step forward and go down into a lunge. Then push yourself back up with back leg, take another step, and do the same thing. Do this for a short distance until you can feel the blood in your glutes.
3. Hamstring Sweep
This excellent exercise will attack knots in both your hamstrings and calves. Keep your left heel on the ground, then bend your right leg while keeping your left leg straight. Sweep out with your arms from the back to the front.
This forward motion will stretch out your calves, which are an often-overlooked muscle when joggers begin warming up for a long run.
4. Ankle Circles
Joint mobility is a huge consideration when it comes to exercise. Your ankles and knees are often the first to start chronic pains after you’ve been exercising for a long time without performing proper stretches. You hear many old folks complain of those exact problems — you don’t want to feel those negative effects when you’re a grandparent! Heck, even now you’re probably doing a detox package and exercising consistently in an effort to keep your body healthy and those pains far far away.
5. Leg Swings
Last but not least, make sure to warm up and stretch out your hip flexors with leg swings. Simply swing each leg left to right across your body before you begin your jog.
By keeping your torso tucked in and your core flexed, you can ensure that you stretch out the lower back muscles as well. These muscles take a pounding every time that your foot lands on hard asphalt or concrete when you jog.
Dynamic Stretching for Runners
There you have it — now that you know these five dynamic stretching exercises for runners, you have no excuse to not implement them before you start your workouts!
If you’re looking for more fitness advice, then you’re in the right place! Keep checking out the rest of the articles on the website for more info.