About the asana
Hi! This is Tim with MidpackRunner.com. I’m here today with the final stretch in the Yin Yoga Essentials for the Active Runner series.
This stretch targets the hip adductors and glutes. The frog asana is found in both yin and other styles of yoga. It provides a great, deep stretch for the muscles that support your running form.
We’ll be holding this asana for between 3 and 5 minutes. As with saddle pose, this stretch can easily become too deep for some people. Start in a position that feels reasonably comfortable, and let gravity pull you deeper into the stretch over the full duration.
Finally, as with all of the other stretches in this series, you’re aiming for slight discomfort as you stretch your connective tissue. Please watch out for crossing from discomfort into pain. If you do, stop immediately and find a certified trainer to help you safely resume.
Begin this stretch on your hands and knees, spine neutral. Separate your legs as wide as is comfortable. Your quads should form a 90° angle to both your lower leg, and your torso. To deepen the stretch, flex your feet making sure to keep your ankle behind your knee.
As you become more flexible, you can lower yourself from your hands down onto your elbows. If that still isn’t a deep enough stretch, try to rest your chin (looking forward) and your chest on the ground with your arms stretched out in front of you.
Try to remain aware of your alignment.
The body’s natural tendency is to slide forward at the hips, and out at the foot. Make a conscious effort to keep your glutes squarely between your knees.
If you find that this stretch is too deep for your current flexibility level, there are a few options that will allow you to slowly build up to it.
Your first option is to simply bring your knees closer in toward your center, maintaining your alignment. Keep in mind that the goal of this stretch is to open up the groin. If you come in too close, you’ll lose the stretch entirely.
If you’ve moved your knees in and this stretch still feels like too much, the next step is to allow your hips to drift forward slightly. As with the previous modification, too much will negate the stretch. Be honest about how you’re feeling, and try to maintain your alignment as much as possible.
Finally, if neither of these modifications is reducing the stretch enough for you without causing you to lose it completely, you can settle back into tadpole instead. Think of tadpole as child’s pose with wide knees.
Start, as with frog, on your hands and knees. Bring your knees as wide as is comfortable, while bringing your feet together until they touch behind you. Then simply let your glutes drop to your feet, lowering your chest toward the ground with your arms stretched out in front of you.
And that, dear readers, is frog pose. It’s also the end of the yin yoga for runners series.
Did I miss your favorite asana? Is there another stretch you’d like me to share? Leave me a comment and let me know.