Stretching Exercises For Runners with Soleus

By Patricia | December 1, 2010
Stretch Before You Run

Almost every fitness expert can tell you how important it is for you to spend some time stretching before running. Stretching exercises for runners should be practiced religiously before every running session, in order to reduce the risks of sustaining any injuries. Moreover, by stretching before running, you could enhance your running experience, since your body’s flexibility improves a great deal. Because of this, the length of your stride increases, allowing you to run at a faster pace, without expending any extra energy. Most stretching exercises for runners take no more than a few minutes and make running easier, over a period of time.

The best stretching exercises for runners

Although there are several exercises that could be a part of any stretching routine runners should choose the exercises that help them strike a balance between flexibility, endurance as well as strength. One of the most highly recommended stretching exercises for runners is the Soleus stretch. The soleus muscle is a major muscle in the calf, which is used when the foot is planted on the ground, just before a push off. This stretch should be performed as you face the wall and place both your palms on it. You need to step back, so that one foot is a few feet away from the wall and the other foot is positioned between rear leg and the wall. The rear leg should be stretched while the other leg should be slightly bent at the knee. Lean into the wall a bit and tuck your butt in, bending both your knees a bit, till you feel the stretch in your calf muscle of the rear leg. Stretch, while both your heels are flat on the ground. Your back should be straight, at a 90 degree angle from the wall. Hold the Soleus stretch for about 10 seconds, before returning to the normal position slowly. Bouncing up or down could lead to excessive strain in your muscles and could also lead to a major injury. Therefore, it is best to perform this stretch under the supervision of a fitness expert.

Some of the other effective stretching exercises for runners include:

  • Splits
  • Lunges
  • Hang ten
  • Heel drop
  • Flamingo

There are certain yoga exercises runners stretches too, that can be very helpful before and after engaging in cardiovascular activities. If you experience any amount of pain or discomfort while performing any of the stretching exercises, it is best to stop immediately.

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