Strength is an integral part of running, but so is stability! Runners of all ages need to engage in stability exercises to increase flexibility and help to prevent injuries like joint sprains (like twisted ankles!). The best time to do these exercises is after running because joints, ligaments, and muscles need to be warm and flexible for maximum efficiency and safety. Cold muscles don’t respond as well to stretching and it could potentially lead to even bigger issues like micro tears.
Try these Runner’s World recommended stretches and exercises with your kids after working out!
Interlock your fingers above your head. Quickly lower into a squat while swinging your arms down. Rise back up to standing while swinging your arms back overhead.
Lower down into a squat, then quickly drive your right knee as high as possible out to your side. Lower your right leg back down, then repeat on the other side.
With your arms in running position, brace your core and drive your right knee up as high as possible. Lower back to standing and repeat.
Lift your left leg off the ground. Bend your right knee and lower down into a squat. Pause, then return to standing.