Over the next month I’ll be posting a short video series and blog about yoga for runners as it has been brought to my attention through teaching yoga, that the reality is many runners, cyclists and athletes in general do not always think about the body as a whole. And also,many people in general only focus on one area of the body or one type of training.
As I am currently training to do an 8km run with a corporate client of mine (Swisse) and I thought I would share some of the cross training we will do during our yoga sessions. I will create a series of short video’s and blogs for what we will be working on.
I am far from a competitive training type of person but many moons ago I had trained for a half marathon and a decade after that I had trained and done two mini triathlons. That might just tell you my age….eeekkkk. in hindsight, what I have learned in my journey with yoga and health coaching is I surely would have trained differently had I know what I know now.
When I trained for the half marathon we were doing two short runs during the week and a long run on the weekend and one of the short runs also turned into hill repeats. Hill repeats is repeatedly running up and down a hill.
I am currently running short runs Tuesday and Thursday followed by a yoga practice and on my long run day, which is Saturday, if I am able to time it correctly, I will also endeavour to get to a yin yoga class at Yoga Sanctuary (a studio I teach at) after my run. A yin yoga style is a great way to really get deep into the myofascial part of the muscle and joints. Which help with the impact of running. When running there is heavy impact on the knee, ankle and feet and with taking each stride and feeling the force of your body weight on the connection of the sole of the foot to the ground, it creates an impact rippling up through the rest of the body. Doing this day in day out, after time will take a toll on the body. This first video we are going to work on from the Knee to Toes.
We will start with the feet. I want you to close your eyes and think about your foundation – the feet. Ask yourself what do you do to take care of your feet? We tend to neglect taking care from the knee down as this portion of our body is not just for running but also for getting around in life. These videos are not only for runners but anyone who is on their feet a lot. Like hikers, labour workers, pace walkers, cyclist – the list is pretty much anyone who uses their feet or those who love their high heels.
In this video we will work on the myofascial tissue that wraps around the bottom of our feet. Myofascial tissue is a type of thin, strong, fibrous connective tissue that extends through our body to provide support and protection to our muscles and bones. Working this out also helps release tension. We will work through some mobility work, stretching and myofascial work in this video. For the sole of the feet portion you will need a hard-spiky ball.
Next we will work the shin muscle, also known as tibialis anterior muscle. This muscle helps acts the foot to dorsiflex and plantarflex. Dorsiflexion is the movement of the foot upwards, so that the toes are closer to the shin. Plantarflexion is the opposite movement of the foot in which the toes are flex downward toward the sole of the foot. So, when thinking about when running, walking, moving from point A to point B you use this muscle. What I find best to get into this muscle is to use a smooth rubber ball also known as a lacrosse ball. If you do not have one of those yet you can start off with a tennis ball.
Next – what is opposite of the shin muscle?? That is our calf muscle. The calf muscle is actually two muscles that are attached to heel via the Achilles tendon. This muscle function is plantarflexing the foot at the ankle joint and also flexing the leg at the knee joint. We will also use the lacrosse ball to work this out.
As we work through these muscles, we will help support the knee joint as they affect it in some form when we create movement or sit for long periods of time. Doing the exercises in this video a few times a week will help support the rest of the body and obviously the area we are working as this is starting of our foundation.
Any of the props seen in the video are for sale in my shop page.
Enjoy the journey!