Mobility training for runners: Improve flexibility and posture with our guided workouts

Become more supple and improve your stability and posture with the a mobility training program specially designed for runners

A person doing Mobility Training

Why do runners need mobility training?

Running on its own doesn’t give you the chance to go through the entire range of motion of your muscles and joints. For this, you need to supplement your running plan with mobility training. 

Mobility work helps you stay supple and reduces your risk of injury, which, in turn, enables you to stay consistent with your training, regardless of whether you’re training for your first 5k or preparing for a multi-day ultramarathon

Incorporating mobility training into your running routine can be as simple as dedicating some time before or after your runs for dynamic stretches and mobility drills, or doing a mobility workout throughout the week. 

Here are some of the benefits of supplementing your running routine with mobility work: 

  • Better range of motion: Mobility exercises help increase the range of motion of your joints and muscles, which, in turn, allows for more efficient stride patterns and movements.
  • Injury prevention: Tight muscles and restricted joint mobility can easily lead to injury, if you overexert yourself. Mobility training helps improve flexibility and reduces your risk of strains and sprains. 
  • Improved performance: Better mobility can help improve your overall performance. When your joints move more freely and muscles work more efficiently, this helps reduce energy expenditure and boost your endurance (in combination with the right running plan, of course!).
  • Faster recovery: Stretching is one of the ways to speed up recovery after long and challenging runs. 
  • Balance and coordination: Running requires excellent coordination and balance, especially when training on trails. Mobility exercises help with all this, helping you maintain stability and avoid falls.

Consistency is key for any performance gains you’re hoping to make; mobility training will not only make your training routine more fun and easier to follow, but it’ll also help you recover better and be more efficient during your runs. 

To help you with all that, we’ve built a mobility training program tailored specifically to the needs of runners. 

Find out more about our mobility program.

Get a mobility training program designed for runners

With Runna, you get a personalized mobility training program that fits seamlessly into your running plan. This will help you ease into mobility training and keep you accountable – and keep everything in one place. 

Our mobility routine is built specifically for runners and will help you improve your flexibility and posture, reduce your risk of injury, and enhance your recovery. For it, you don’t need any equipment.

To get started, download the app, pick the right running plan for you and then add mobility workouts to it. 

Or, if you’re already using Runna, simply go to Manage plan -> Add Additional Workouts -> Set Up Mobility to personalize your plan to your needs. 

Choose your mobility day

The day you pick for your mobility session will be the same every week; this introduces a sense of consistency and helps you stick to your routine. Choose the day based on your schedule, availability, and preferences. Here are some of the options to help you pick what works best for you: 

  • Rest day: Doing your mobility workout on a day when you’re not running is a great way to focus on recovery and keep you moving. However, some people prefer a complete break of all exercise on rest days; if this is you, opt for a different day.
  • Before your long run: Scheduling your mobility workout before your long run helps activate your muscles and joints, which, in turn, increases your flexibility and lowers injury risk. However, some runners may choose to do a light cardio warm-up before their long run and do their mobility session at a different time.
  • After your long run: Adding mobility exercises after your run can help the cool-down process, ease muscle tightness, enhance flexibility, and promote recovery. One potential downside is that fatigue from the run might diminish the energy and concentration needed for an effective mobility routine.

Our mobility plan progression

Our mobility plan consists of 26 stretching and yoga workouts led by Runna Coach Torzi Robinson. They’re specifically built for runners and will help you improve your overall flexibility, mobility, and range of motion of your joints. 

Each session takes 30 minutes to complete.

Whenever you switch plans or start a new plan, the Runna app will automatically save your progress.

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Mobility work, strength training, pilates, cross training: What’s best? 

In short, all of them. Each type of workout – strength training, mobility work, pilates, cross-training – helps you become a better runner in the long term.

  • Mobility exercises help you improve the range of motion of your joints and your flexibility. This leads to better stride efficiency and reduced risk of muscle strains, joint problems, and injuries.
  • Strength training builds strength and endurance, which can help you improve your performance both in terms of speed and distance running. It also helps improve your running economy and keep injuries at bay by strengthening your muscles, tendons, and joints. 
  • Pilates is beneficial for your core strength, balance, and body alignment. This, in turn, helps you stabilize your body during workouts and address muscle imbalances.
  • Cross training adds variety to your running program and makes it more enjoyable – especially if you need some time off of running to recover from an injury.

If you’re using Runna, you can add strength training, mobility work, and Pilates workouts to your running plan from within the app. This way, you can keep everything in one place and follow your progression across plans. As for cross training, simply pick a sport you enjoy, such as cycling, elliptical, rowing, swimming, hiking, and more. 

Your choices will depend on your goals: 

  • If injury prevention (or recovery) is your main concern, focus on strength training and mobility work.
  • If you want to improve your running efficiency and core strength, consider adding Pilates and strength conditioning to your plan.
  • For overall fitness, to avoid burnout, and keep things fun and interesting, add cross training to your routine.
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Should you stretch before or after your workouts?

Stretching before or after your workouts (or both) depends on the type of stretching and your goals. Here are the things you need to consider:

Do dynamic stretches as a warm up

Dynamic stretches are active movements where you go through full ranges of motion of your muscles and joints. It helps you warm up your body and prepare it for the run, reducing the risk of injury. 

If you’re using Runna, simply click on Warm up stretches before you start your workout, and our coaches will guide you through a warm-up routine that’s ideal for runners.

Examples include glute bridges, toe walks, leg swings, clams, and more.

Do static stretches after workouts 

Static stretching involves holding a stretch for 10-20 seconds or more. Do this after workouts, when your muscles and joints are warm and pliable. This helps relax your muscles, improve your flexibility, and recover faster. 

With Runna, once you complete a run, simply click on Cooldown stretches to see our coaches’ post-run cooldown routine.

Examples include standing hamstring stretches or quad stretches, pigeon stretches, downward dog, and more.

Do a full mobility workout on a different day

You can also choose to do a full stretching session on a different day, to focus only on the mobility exercises. 

With Runna, you can easily schedule your 30-minute mobility session on your rest day. This is different from the warmups and cooldowns you get before and after each run.

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Take your running to the next level

Start your plan today for just $17.99 per month / $109.99 per year.

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FAQ: All you need to know about mobility training for runners

How can I improve my mobility as a runner?

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Take your running to the next level

Your personalized running coach with tailored training plans to achieve your goals, from running a faster 5k to finishing your first marathon.

Download on the App Store.
Download Runna on the Google Play Store.
First week free. Cancel anytime.
$17.99
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