5 Pre-Running Stretches - Iron Health Physical Therapy & Cryotherapy
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5 Pre-Running Stretches

Always Stretch Before You Run!

These are some stretches that I used to utilize before I would run in my cross country meets. These five stretches get your leg muscles activated and ready to go before you get out and run. By stretching before you run, it will decrease the possibility of you getting an injury or pain while you are running.

First Stretch: Glute & Piriformis Activation

To do this stretch, you are going to stand up straight while maintaining good posture and balance. Bring your ankle up pointing the foot towards the knee and then the waist. Feel the stretch in your glutes and lateral quads.

Complete this stretch at a slow walking pace over 20 meters.

Second Stretch: Hamstring Sweep

To complete this stretch, you are going to take a short step forward and keep your heel firmly on the ground. Put your opposite leg out straight and bend at your knee as if you’re going to sit down on a chair. While doing this, sweep your arms down towards the ground. This creates a dynamic stretch on your hamstrings.

Do this stretch for about 20 meters as well at a slow walking pace.

Third Stretch: Ankle & Calf Mobilization

For this stretch you are going to alternate calf raise and lowering. Place your foot on the ground with the toe and ball of your foot first. From there, lower your weight on the foot allowing the heel to return to the ground. While doing this, it might help to imagine you are doing the opposite of walking and going toe to heel instead of heel to toe.

Complete this stretch by doing it 3x for 15-20 seconds per set.

Fourth Stretch: Leg Swings:

With this stretch you are going to stand with your feet shoulder width apart and put your weight on one of your legs. While lifting your opposite leg you are going to keep your leg straight and swing it side to side. It may help to do this stretch while holding onto a chair or a fence. This is going to activate your abductor and adductor muscle groups.

Complete this stretch by doing it 3x for 15-20 seconds each leg.

Fifth and Final Stretch: Leg Swings

For the last stretch you are going to be really getting your hamstring and hips ready to get running.

Just like the previous stretch, stand feet should width apart and put your weight on one foot. Lift your opposite leg and swing it back and forth as if you are kicking a soccer ball. Be sure to keep your leg straight as you do this.

Complete this stretch by doing it 3x for 15-20 seconds each leg.


After completing these stretches, you should be ready to get out and start your run. Be sure to always stretch before you run as it will help prevent most injuries that are common with running. For more information on this stretch, head over to our YouTube and check out the video demonstration! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MT-h093L6Kc

Thomas Bendel

Thomas Bendel

Thomas studied Business Management at the University of Indianapolis. His interest thrive in the health and fitness industry. His passion for the industry is driven through his will to help people live healthier and more comfortable lives. Thomas is wanting to pursue a career working as a business leader and grow as an entrepreneur.
Thomas Bendel

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