Running benefits from stretching are numerous. Stretching after a run helps increase blood flow, which aids in muscle rehabilitation and regeneration. This procedure lessens muscle and joint discomfort by assisting in the removal of lactic acid and waste products. Stretching also increases the key running muscles’ flexibility, which can aid to increase range of motion and lower the risk of overuse and muscular strain problems. To further prepare the body for the next physical activity, lower the chance of muscular strain, and improve running performance, dynamic stretching is advised as part of the pre-run warm-up. For award-winning footwear, choose Tarkine running shoes.

However, it’s important to adhere to certain dos and don’ts when stretching in order to get the best benefits. It’s best to avoid static stretching prior to a run, gently into each stretch without bouncing or straining it, hold each stretch for 10–15 seconds prior to speedwork, and hold each stretch for 30 seconds afterwards.

It’s also crucial to pay attention to the particular stretches you perform. Some stretches could reduce performance or make you more likely to get hurt. We’ve therefore compiled a list of the greatest stretches for runners that may be performed following each run, as well as more detailed stretches for particular muscles that may require further care. We’ve also included some full-body stretches that may be performed once or twice a week or after a run and target numerous muscle groups.

Depending on how much time you have, repeat each stretch once or twice on each leg, holding it for around 30 seconds each time. These recommendations can help runners get the most out of stretching and enjoy all of its advantages.


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Advanced Running Stretches for Deeper Muscle Release

Kneeling and stretching your quadriceps against a wall.

Kneel on one leg with your back against a wall while standing with your back to the wall. Feel the stretch at the front of your thigh as you lean forward from your hips. To prevent crushing your lower back, keep your upper body tall. If you have ankle issues, be cautious.



Stretching the hamstrings while standing with one leg bent

Be sure to warm up completely before attempting this stretch. Put your foot on a chair or sill while standing on one leg. Deeply stoop your upper leg and place your chest on your thigh. Gently attempt to straighten your upper leg while keeping your chest down.



Stretching the glutes while sitting cross-legged

Cross your legs, keeping your back straight, shins parallel to your body, and feet as wide apart as you can. Stretch your arms out in front of you while bending forward while maintaining a straight spine.



Whole-body Stretches to Incorporate into a Runner’s Routine

Downward-facing dog

Perform the downward-facing dog by positioning your feet hip-width apart and your hands shoulder-width apart on the ground. Ensure your legs remain straight, your hips are elevated, and your heels are lengthened toward the ground. Push your palms and fingers flat into the floor and imagine spreading the ground apart with your hands and feet. To increase the stretch, alternate the weight between your legs and gently bend your knees. This pose stretches your hamstrings, calves, Achilles tendons, back, and shoulders.


Forward-bend shoulder stretch

To start the stretch, stand with your feet hip-width apart and interlock your fingers, then bend over at the hips. As your head faces the ground, keep your quads tense but your neck relaxed. To avoid any strain on your lower back, rest your hands on your hips before returning to the upright position. This stretching exercise is beneficial for your hamstrings, calves, shoulders, chest, and arms.



Lying spinal twist

Lie on your back with both legs straight, then draw your right knee towards your chest and hook your right foot behind your left knee. Roll to your left side until your right knee touches the ground, and extend your right arm towards the floor on your right side at head-height. Turn your head to look along your arm and relax into the posture. Repeat on the other side. This stretch targets your gluteals, lower and upper back, shoulders, arms, and chest.

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After running, try these stretches to cool down and improve your flexibility:

Hamstring stretch while lying down

Relax your upper body and straighten both legs. Pull one leg towards you, feeling the stretch in the back of your thigh. For a variation, use a non-stretching band or cord to push against as you straighten the leg further.


Gluteal stretch while lying down

Bend both knees and keep your feet on the floor. Place one ankle on the opposite knee and pull both legs towards your chest, feeling the stretch in your buttocks. Adjust the position of your hips and front knee to vary the intensity.



Groin stretch while seated

Sit on the floor with the soles of your feet together and knees dropping to the sides. Use your leg muscles to lower your knees towards the ground, and lengthen your spine for a deeper stretch.



Straight leg calf stretch

Step your left foot forward and bend the knee, keeping your right leg straight back with the heel on the ground. Lean into the wall until you feel a stretch in your right calf.

Soleus stretch

Stand closer to the wall and bend your front knee, keeping the back leg straight and your foot flat on the floor. Lean your hips back to deepen the stretch in your lower calf.

strong man stretching calf and leaning on wall