Choosing the right type of yoga according to your running goals

Photo : Éloïse Rochefort

Yoga can optimize your training for achieving your running goals. As a matter of fact, you can introduce different types of yoga into your training plan which will, each with their particularities, allow you to progress healthily.

Just as recovery is as important as training, the practice of active and muscular yoga is as important as that of passive yoga. We can distinguish two types of practices: the yin type (muscle relaxation and passivity) and the yang type (muscle work and heat).

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In times of increased training volume when you are putting a greater muscular workload on your body, it would be recommended to turn to yin yoga or restorative yoga. Its particularity is mainly found in the long holding of postures in a state of muscular relaxation. The effects, from an anatomical point of view, are located in the connective tissues: fascias, tendons, ligaments and joints.


Surprisingly, you will probably find this practice more mentally difficult, because you are used to moving all the time. On the other hand, you will be able to develop your mental strength in a situation of discomfort, since when you are in a static posture, just like when you are in the middle of the mountains, there is not really any way to save yourself from the moment present, even when you encounter an obstacle.

During your tuning period, in the weeks leading to your race, continuous movement practice, commonly known as flow, is ideal for optimizing your breathing in movement. You will also be called upon to develop your mobility by fluid sequences which allows you to work your whole body. Yoga flow is also a great solution during recovery for this reason.

When your training volume is low, it’s time to opt for an athletic practice that is demanding on your body. It will help develop your strength, endurance and flexibility, while being beneficial for your breathing capacity.

Generally, the proposed sequences include several balance postures that will allow you to work on your stabilizers. When practiced in a hot room, where the temperature varies between 37 and 42 ° C, these postures will allow you to increase your resistance to high temperatures and you will have a lot more fun running in summer.

Finally, there are different styles of yoga specific to running. For example functional yoga, which specifically targets the muscle groups and joints involved in the practice of this discipline,  works on the inherent qualities necessary for the runner. However, if you are looking to be more specific in your training plan, it may be best to consult a qualified teacher who can advise you personally.

Yoga is certainly synergistic to running, but you still need to plan its integration into your training correctly, so that the combination of the two has a significant impact on your trail performance and your well-being.

Translation : Caroline Beaton

Éloïse Rochefort is a yoga teacher and marathon runner. She seeks to inspire athletes to improve their performance through yoga and amateurs to discover the many benefits of this age-old discipline. You can follow her on social media via Facebook as well as on Instagram.

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