If you’re a runner, try these 8 yoga poses for stable ankles

As a runner, ankle stability is key.

It’s the difference between a smooth run and a painful sprain.

Yoga, in this regard, can be your secret weapon.

It allows you to strengthen and stabilise your ankles, while also giving you a choice to explore various poses.

The poses I’m about to share with you are perfect for runners looking to ensure their ankles are as strong and stable as they can be.

So, if you’re ready to boost your running game, here are 8 yoga poses that can do wonders for your ankles.

1) Downward facing dog

There’s a reason why this is a foundational pose in many yoga practices.

Downward facing dog not only stretches and strengthens your hamstrings and calves, but it also works wonders for your ankles.

As you press your heels towards the ground, you’re actively engaging and strengthening your ankles.

This can help improve both stability and flexibility, crucial for avoiding injuries when running.

But like any other physical activity, proper form is key.

Be sure to maintain alignment in this pose to reap its full benefits.

This pose might seem simple, but don’t underestimate its power for promoting ankle stability.

2) Tree pose

Let me share a little personal story here.

When I first started incorporating yoga into my running routine, the tree pose was a game changer for me.

This pose requires you to balance on one leg, which really engages your ankles.

It’s a direct way to improve stability and strength.

I remember the first time trying it, my standing leg was shaking, and it was tough to maintain balance.

But over time, I noticed a significant improvement not just in my yoga practice, but in my running as well.

The tree pose can be challenging at first, especially if you’re not used to balancing poses.

But trust me, stick with it and you’ll see a real difference in your ankle strength and stability.

3) Warrior III

Warrior III is an excellent pose for ankle stability and it’s all about balance.

As you lift one leg and lean forward, your standing leg, specifically your ankle, has to work hard to keep you stable.

But here’s a little something that might surprise you.

The name Warrior III or “Virabhadrasana III” in Sanskrit, is named after a fierce warrior from Hindu mythology, Virabhadra.

This pose embodies strength and balance just like its namesake.

So next time you’re in Warrior III, remember you’re not just working on your ankles.

You’re embodying the strength of a mythological warrior.

Now how cool is that?

4) Half moon pose

Half moon pose is another fantastic balancing pose that targets ankle stability.

In this pose, one leg is extended out to the side while you balance on the other.

It may seem tricky initially, but with regular practice, you’ll notice a significant improvement in your balance and ankle strength.

Like other balancing poses, the half moon pose requires concentration and patience.

But the payoff is worth it.

You’ll not only enhance your ankle stability for running but also improve your overall body coordination and posture.

Remember to breathe and take it slow as you work on mastering this pose.

Your ankles will thank you.

5) Bridge pose

Bridge pose is close to my heart.

It’s not just about ankle stability; it’s about opening and stretching the entire body.

As you lift your hips off the floor while keeping your feet grounded, you’re giving your ankles a subtle but effective workout.

This pose has always served as a gentle reminder for me about the interconnectedness of our bodies.

Strengthening one part – like our ankles – can have a positive effect on our entire system.

So, when practicing bridge pose, think of it as a holistic approach to your wellbeing.

It’s not just about running better, but feeling better in every aspect of your life.

6) Garland pose

Garland pose, or Malasana, is a deep squat that really opens up your hips and stretches out your ankles.

It’s one of those poses that doesn’t seem like much at first, but can be quite challenging the longer you hold it.

I’ll admit, the first time I did this pose, I was surprised by how much it worked my ankles.

I couldn’t hold it for long and my heels wouldn’t touch the ground.

But over time, I noticed increased flexibility and strength in my ankles, which had a tremendous impact on my running.

It’s not always easy, but every time I hold that pose a little longer, I know I’m doing something good for my body.

And that’s what keeps me going.

7) Eagle pose

Eagle pose is a unique asana that requires you to wrap one leg around the other while maintaining your balance.

This pose provides a comprehensive workout for your ankles as they work to stabilize your body in this twisted position.

While it can be challenging to get into at first, with regular practice you’ll see an improvement in both your balance and ankle stability.

You’ll also get the added benefits of improving your concentration and inner sense of calm.

Try to hold the pose for a few breaths on each side, and with time, you’ll notice the difference when you’re running.

8) Hero pose

If there’s one thing to remember about incorporating yoga into your routine as a runner, it’s this: Don’t overlook the power of restorative poses.

Hero pose is a seated position that gently stretches your ankles, shins, and the tops of your feet.

It might not look like much of a workout, especially compared to some of the other poses we’ve covered.

But it’s just as important.

It’s these types of restorative poses that allow your body to recover, heal and grow stronger.

So make sure to give it the time and attention it deserves. Your ankles will thank you.

It’s all connected

The beauty of yoga lies in its holistic approach to fitness and wellbeing.

It’s not just about strengthening a specific body part, but about creating a balance between the physical, mental, and emotional aspects of our being.

When we talk about stable ankles for runners, we’re not just talking about the ankles in isolation.

We’re talking about a body that is well-balanced, a mind that is focused, and a spirit that is determined.

These yoga poses are more than just exercises for your ankles.

They’re a pathway to better running, better posture, better balance, and ultimately, a better you.

So next time you step on your yoga mat or tie up your running shoes, remember this.

It’s all connected.

Your body. Your mind. Your spirit.

And every pose you strike brings you one step closer to harmonizing this beautiful connection.

Tiffany Mcgee

Tiffany Mcgee

Related articles

Most read articles

Get our articles

The latest Move news, articles, and resources, sent straight to your inbox every month.