Every hiker should do these poses before hitting the trail.
Hiking requires a lot more endurance and strength than some people may think. But if you’re a hiker, chances are you know how important it is to adequately prepare your body for the long trail ahead. Incorporating some simple yoga poses into your next hike will warm up your body and prepare you for a safe and successful hike. Plus, you get the added benefit of being able to practice yoga outside!
Below are nine yoga poses you should practice before every hike to prevent injury and build strength and flexibility. They’ll also help to increase your circulation.
By Jessie Benson
1. Standing Forward Fold
Practicing Standing Forward Fold before you start hiking will wake up your hamstrings and clear your mind for the work that lies ahead.
2. Downward Facing Dog
Downward Facing Dog is great for stretching out those amazing (and probably really tight!) calves you’ll get from hiking.
3. Low Lunge
Your hip flexors work hard to support every step you take while hiking. Low Lunge is a fantastic stretch to release them.
4. Half Splits
Half Split Pose stretches the thighs, hamstrings, and groin. It’s great for hikers who tend to hold tightness in the legs.
5. Pyramid Pose
This pose is great for stretching your hamstrings and calves, which in turn helps relieve any tightness that can build up while you’re hiking.
6. Wide Leg Standing Forward Fold (With Shoulder Stretch)
This Forward Fold variation is a fantastic way to stretch your hamstrings, calves, and glutes before hiking. The optional arm variation opens up your back, chest, and shoulders. This is especially important if you plan on carrying a backpack.
7. Standing Figure Four
This pose targets the large muscle groups around the hips and glutes that tend to tighten up while hiking. If you feel wobbly, hold on to a stable surface (like a nearby tree).
8. Jiva Squats
Jiva squats are a great way to wake up your muscles before your hike while also strengthening your glutes.
9. Dancer Pose
This pose will provide a great stretch for the quads and improve your balance for more technical hiking routes. Option to place one hand on something stable, like a tree or your car.
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