After a long run or race, your legs, back and shoulders feel sore and tight. Practising a few simple restorative yoga poses can help you regain range of motion, reduce swelling in your legs, and improve circulation to speed your recovery.
Do this sequence using pillows to lend support and to give your body something tangible to fall into to help you unwind. You don’t have to rush into this routine – you may wait until you’ve showered and eaten or before bed. Hold each position for at least five and up to 15 minutes.
Focus on relaxing your entire body and taking slow, full breaths.
With feet wider than hip-width, lower into a squat with pillows for support.
2 Child’s pose
Fold forward over wide knees with pillows under your belly. Turn your head halfway through.
3 Prone twist
Stack your knees and lower your abdomen to the pillows. Repeat on the other side.
Create a wedge with three or four pillows and recline over it with arms stretched wide.
5 Side bend
Lie sideways over pillows, keeping hips and shoulders on the ground. Repeat on other side.
6 Leg Prop
Prop your legs up a wall while resting your back or, better yet, your pelvis on a pillow. Or use an ottoman or chair for a bent-kneed version. It’s okay if you fall asleep!