Training

The Top Five Stretches for Runners

Stretching after a run can often be overlooked or missed altogether as we eagerly refuel and carry on with the day. But we all know it’s an important part of the process and if you skip a stretch, you may well regret it in the long run when injury creeps in. We spoke to our experts to get the low down on the essential stretches for runners that we can all squeeze into a routine.

Sam Murphy is a running coach and sports journalist. We spoke to her to find out the best stretches for a runner post-session. Perform these five key stretches after a run, it will take a couple of minutes and leave you much fresher for the next one. Try to hold for 20-30 seconds on each leg.

Standing quad stretch

How: Standing on one leg (you can use a wall to balance) take hold of the top of the other foot and draw it towards your backside as your squeeze your knees together. You should feel it across front of the thigh.

Hip flexor stretch in a lunge position

How: Split your legs so one is forward and the other behind. Standing on the ball of the back foot come into a lunge position – you can bring your back knee down if necessary. Hold the hands on the hips as you stretch the front of the hip.

Calf stretch on step Straight leg calf plus bent knee calf

How: Standing on a step, drop the heel of one foot down towards the ground keeping the leg straight. Hold and then perform stretch again this time with a bent knee.

Standing hip stretch

How: Balancing one leg (using wall is needed) take the opposite foot to the thigh of the standing leg and squat down on your balancing leg. Keep the top foot flexed as you squat lower to make it more intense.

Standing hamstring stretch

How: Split the legs one in front of the other and put the heel of the front foot onto a step. Rest your hands on the thigh of the bent leg and flex the toes of the front one towards your face.