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Post run stretches

After a run or race, it can be tempting to immediately lay down to rest but taking your time to cool down and stretch off can help boost your performance, prevent injury, increase suppleness and reduce stiffness. Try these 9 exercises immediately after finishing your run and start reaping the rewards.

Hold these static stretches for at least 15 seconds each.

Calf stretch

Step back with your right leg, stretching the leg whilst bending your front leg. Stretch the calf by pressing the heel towards or down into the floor. Once complete, change sides.

Quad stretch

Bring your right foot towards your buttock and hold your ankle, pulling the foot closer until you feel the stretch in your quadriceps. Tip – try to keep your knees together! Hold the stretch and then switch sides.

IT band stretch

Standing, cross your right foot behind the left. Reach your right arm over head, keep your chest and shoulders facing the front, flex your spine over towards the left. Hold and repeat on the other side.

Hip flexor stretch

Take a long step back, landing on the ball of your foot keeping the heel off the floor. Bend your knees until you feel a stretch in the front of your hip. Tip – make sure your front knee is stacked over the ankle and keep your hips square to the front to get the maximum benefit from this stretch. Hold the stretch then switch sides.

Hamstring stretch

Lay down on your back, bending the left knee comfortably with the foot on the floor. Keep the right leg as straight as you can and flex at the hip to bring the leg closer towards you. Take hold of the leg with both hands and stretch the leg towards you until you feel the desired stretch in your hamstrings. Hold the stretch and then switch legs.

Figure 4 stretch

Bend both legs and place your left ankle across your right thigh. Slide your hands around the back of your right thigh and gently pull it towards you until you feel the desired stretch in your glutes and adductor. Hold and then change sides.

Lower back stretch

Take your arms wide and keep your shoulders on the floor. Bend your knees and let them fall together to one side. Hold and then repeat on the other side.

Child's pose

Laying on your front, push off your hands and bring your hips towards your heels. Knees can go a little wider than your hips and keep your big toes together. Keep a long back with your arms reaching out in front along the floor. Relax through your hips and spine and stay here as long as you wish.

Chest stretch

Standing or kneeling, extend your arms wide and push back. Keep your shoulders down and open up across your chest bringing the shoulder blades closer together.

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