If you’ve ever had a running injury, you may have wondered how (besides not running!) you could have prevented the injury. The answer often lies in strengthening and stretching; specifically targeting glutes and hips. (Say it with me…glutes and hips…glutes and hips…)
Coach Lauren Evans shared these two targeted exercises that take only a few moments, but can go a long way in preventing injury.
One of the most important parts of the body for a runner to stretch is the hip flexors, Coach Lauren says. Hip mobility is essential to running, but it can be one of the biggest problems, especially for those of us who sit at work all day. Here’s a hip mobility exercise you can do in your office or cubicle. Get into a low lunge position, starting with your left leg in front. You want to feel a nice stretch in the front of your hip on the back leg. One way to emphasize the stretch is to squeeze your slide glute (side butt) on the side that is extended back. If you can, hold this stretch for about 3 minutes, then switch sides. If you feel tighter on one side than the other, go back to the tighter side and stretch it again.
Our glutes provide both stabilization and power when we run. Here’s a glute exercise you can do while you’re pumping gas, cooking dinner, or even waiting in line. It’s known as “hip hikes” Stand with your feet about hip-width apart. Then raise your right leg up and down a couple of inches without bending your knee, all while squeezing or flexing your left glute. I do it about five times, then switch sides.
What are the go-to exercises that you rely on to help keep you injury-free? Please share your comments.