HOKA fan KOYA WEBB says that both yoga and running have greatly impacted her life. Running serves as her stress relief, while yoga keeps her flexible and strong for runs. Koya originally discovered her love of yoga when she was injured as a Division I track athlete. “Yoga was a gift that healed my body, mind and spirit,” she says. Now, she practices yoga every day and integrates simple poses before and after her runs.
Here are three of Koya’s go-to yoga poses that help improve strength and flexibility in runners and yogis of all abilities.
1. Forward fold
This stretch will help target your hamstrings after a hard run. Focus on melting your heart toward your thighs. To build in a hip stretch, try bending one knee and really lean into the movement, then switch.
2. Wide leg forward fold
You may already be doing this yoga pose as a part of your cool-down, but you can mix it up by pointing your toes slightly inward to get more out of this stretch. Walk your hands to each side and hold to give your tired legs some individualized love and attention.
3. Triangle Pose
Start with both feet facing one direction. Shift your weight to your back leg and lean sideways as you motion your arms perpendicular to the ground. If you’re feeling unstable, try a wider stance to keep yourself grounded.
If you need more guidance, check out the video below for Koya’s demonstrations.
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When I first won Ironman New Zealand in 2001 I finished in a time of 8:24:25hr 19yrs later I finish 6th in 8:14:36 as a 47yr old! At least I'm going faster and faster!
I know I can go so much better after such a limited build up in my running preparation so I'm looking forward to when we can race again, and full of motivation to race to my potential and keep pushing the boundaries as a nearly 48yr old!!