This yoga flow for runners will keep you footloose & fancy-free

HOUSTON (KTRK) -- If you're gearing up for the Chevron Houston Marathon and you haven't been taking the time to stretch properly, chances are good that your body isn't feeling too great right about now.

Fear not -- we have the solution for your tight hamstrings and aching joints: yoga!

We touched base with Frances Kellerman, a distance runner and instructor at Yogaleena Studio, for a simple, restorative yoga flow that will help runners with even the tightest of muscles.

MORE WORKOUTS: How lying on the ground could make you a better runner

"We tend in our lives -- especially those of us with a desk job -- to have a lot of repetitive motions that we do over and over and our body gets stuck in those motions, and we get rigid with our muscle movements," Kellerman said.

"Stretching helps to bring back the full range of mobility that our bodies should have."

VIDEO: Beginner yoga flow for runners
EMBED More News Videos

Even if you've never set foot on a yoga mat, this simple flow will make a world of difference for your muscles.

This beginner flow is short and accessible for new runners. All you need is a mat, two blocks and an optional blanket for padding if your knees need a little extra care.

For optimal stretching, hold each pose for two to three breaths, rooting deeper into the pose with each breath.

Begin your practice in child's pose. From there, move through this sequence of postures to open up your hip flexors and give your muscles much-needed TLC:

  • Downward-facing dog
  • High runner's lunge
  • Low runner's lunge
  • Half split
  • Pyramid pose
  • Wide-legged forward fold
  • Easy twist
  • Downward-facing dog
  • Repeat first sequence on the other leg

  • Child's pose
  • Downward-facing dog
  • Low runner's lunge
  • Pyramid pose
  • Standing split
  • Halfway lift
  • Downward-facing dog
  • Repeat second sequence on the other leg

  • Child's pose

Runners who choose not to stretch are likely to see injury first in their hamstrings and hip flexors. But, because the human body is one large, interconnected system, problems that originate with specific muscle groups can quickly manifest as pain in nearby areas.

"Our body is a system and it all works together. Yoga is amazing because it systemically stretches the body and hopefully avoids injury that may manifest somewhere else, from tightness or a tear," she added.

Chronically tight runners who don't stretch properly are likely to experience pain in the hips and lower back.

Stay with for the latest about the Chevron Houston Marathon and Aramco Houston Half Marathon, and tune to ABC13 on Sunday, January 15 for live coverage on race day.

PHOTOS: 2016 Chevron Houston Marathon and Aramco Houston Half Marathon
Copyright © 2019 KTRK-TV. All Rights Reserved.