Pilates For Runners
Pilates for Runners
More and more runners are using Pilates to complement their training. It’s a great strength trainer, flexibility booster and injury preventer for runners. In fact, it could be one of the best forms of cross training out there for runners. Runners can benefit a great deal from doing Pilates. From joint mobility, to improved flexibility and much more, incorporating Pilates into your life may be the best thing you do for your running. Curious why Pilates is so great for your running?
How Runners Can Benefit From Pilates
Reduced risk of injury via posture correction
As a runner, you know that stability is key. And you also know that that stability comes primarily from your core. A stable core is what protects your spine and surrounding muscles from injury while running. So, because Pilates is an exercise that places a heavy focus on correct posture and proper movement, it helps reduce your chances of injuring an area that you’ve injured in the past. And, as a bonus, Pilates reduces your chances of injuring a new spot in the first place. Pilates also works to fire and build muscles that keep your running posture in tip-top shape, which is something you want to be on top of as a runner.
Pilates places a huge focus on joint mobility and flexibility. Thus, when incorporating Pilates into your running routine, you’ll find that your recovery time following a difficult run, or an injury is greatly decreased. Another thing you’ll love about Pilates is that the condition of your muscles is much better, making it so that you feel far less sore and tight after running.
Though most people think of their abs when they hear “core,” that term refers to far more than your stomach muscles. In fact, your core is made up your entire torso, which includes:
Hip instability is one of the biggest causes of injuries for female runners and is a result of a weak core. However, when your entire core is balanced and strong, your running is more stable. This stability puts you at much lower risk of injury. And, it just so happens that Pilates is one of the best ways to build your core. Rather than just working the surface muscles like many workouts do, Pilates gets down to the deep core to uncover a new level of strength.
The stronger a runner’s body, the better s/he can maintain good form, even when exhaustion hits. This is where Pilates comes in. Keeping your ab muscles strong (the ones that connect your spine to your legs and help in rotating your leg) is also key for runners. And Pilates helps you to build those deep muscles. In addition, Pilates is great for loosening legs, back, and hips, which is a great way to ensure your running stride remains fluid, long, and strong.
More Controlled Breath
Proper breathing techniques are something that every runner must master. Without controlled breathing, you’re likely to exhaust much more quickly, and run the risk of a killer side ache. Pilates is much the same. Breathing is a key part of the practice. Thus, Pilates focuses on teaching the type of breathing that fills the lower part of your lungs fully. And, once you’ve taken that deep breath, Pilates teaches you how to properly use it to get through your movements. This translates to running, where your breathing will determine your success.
Balance plays a big role in the sport of running. It’s what keeps you moving forward and keeps you from falling on a trail. But do you know where that balances comes from? Your core. And since we now know that Pilates is all about core and balance, it’s no surprise that adding Pilates to your running schedule causes you to see a drastic improvement in your balance while running.