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So you are a disciplined runner, quite happy with your choice of workout. The joy of trying to catch your breath after a good run with sweat dripping from the forehead, when the mind is totally in the present moment, is quite a spiritual experience for many. So why Yoga when you run? The idea of No Pain No Gain has been drilled into our heads since childhood. But here’s how Yoga can help you run better, faster and with much less pain.

It is common for runners to complain about injuries in the hip or limbs. This could be due to cramps, poor stretching or not enough warm up. To stay away from injuries as a runner, just stretching is not enough. You need to learn and practice Yoga to know about the postures that will make your body more flexible, less prone to injuries, more alert and give your workout experience more depth. Simply put, yoga compliments and amplifies the benefits of running for you.  And what do you know? Next time, you may find yourself covering more distance with much ease!

Some asanas that runners can practice include

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1. Butterfly pose (Badhakonasana)

Sit in Sukhasana with legs crossed comfortably. Now for Butterfly pose,

2. Seated Half Spinal Twist (Ardha Matsyendrasana)

For this asana,

3. Standing Forward Bend or Hasta Padasana

 In this asana,

As we breathe out, we try and lower our upper body to bring the knees closer to the chest region. We don’t over exert ourselves in this posture. We do only as much as we can comfortably do without a quivering breath.

We stay in this pose for 2-3 rounds of breaths and then slowly come up in Tadasana or palm tree pose.

4. Trikonasana or Triangle Pose

 5. Vrikshasana or Tree Pose

6. Warrior pose (Virabhadrasana)

This is ideal pose for letting go of the stress in your shoulders and arms. It helps build body balance and stamina while toning the arms, legs and the lower back.

Do not do this pose if you have spine injuries or high blood pressure. If you have a knee issue, you can use the support of a wall.

7. Angle Pose or Konasana

8. Upward Plank Pose (Purvottanasana)

Lie on your back.

9. Chair pose or Utkatasana

10. Oil Massage

Once you finish with your Yoga session or for that matter any other work out, it is a good idea to give yourself a full body massage using herbal muscle release oil that seeps into your muscular tissues, lubricating and rejuvenating each muscle fiber in your body.  It also releases the psychosomatic stress stored in your body.  For example, the Shankara Muscle Release Oil, a unique blend of eastern herbal essences and actives from the west like sunflower, almond, sesame, aloe vera, castor, jojoba, sweet birch, lavender, cedarwood, frankincense, devils claw, boswellia among others, is widely being used by those who are into sports, Yoga or some form of workout that works up the muscle tissues of the body.

It is important to learn and practice yoga postures under the supervision of a trained Sri Sri Yoga teacher.

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