Get the right Pilates training for runners to improve your flexibility, posture, and core strength

Use Pilates to become a stronger and more flexible runner – and boost your running performance

A woman on pilates

What are the benefits of Pilates for runners?

Pilates is a valuable addition to a runner’s training plan and offers targeted benefits that directly enhance performance. 

Essentially, Pilates helps you strengthen your deep core muscles, which leads to a more efficient and injury-resistant stride. This helps you stay consistent with your training, improve your balance and stability, and boost your running performance. 

Pilates brings tangible benefits to runners of all levels: 

  • Improved core strength: Pilates focuses heavily on core strength, so your abs, lower back, hips, and pelvic muscles will love it. A strong core will help you improve your posture, as well as your running efficiency and stability.
  • Enhanced flexibility and range of motion: As with mobility workouts, regular Pilates sessions will make you more supple and improve the range of motion of your joints – especially in the hips and hamstrings, which are crucial for runners.
  • Better balance and coordination: Pilates exercises often have a balancing element to them, which makes them great for overall coordination and body awareness. This can be particularly beneficial for running on uneven terrain.
  • Injury prevention: By strengthening the muscles around the joints, Pilates helps reduce the risk of classic runners’ injuries like IT band pain, runner's knee, and shin splints.
  • Better breathing control: Similarly to yoga, Pilates focuses on proper breathing techniques, which can help you breathe better during your runs.

The best way to get Pilates’ full benefits is to be consistent with your routine – plus, it’ll make your running training more fun and enjoyable, and help you recover better from your running sessions.

You can now effortlessly add a Pilates workout to your running program and get the full benefits of both with Runna. We’ve built a 26-sessions Pilates routine specifically designed for runners, which you can access from our app or on our YouTube channel.

Find out more about our Pilates program.

Get a Pilates training program designed for runners

If you use Runna, you can easily add regular Pilates workouts to your training routine and keep everything in one place. And, if you need something extra, you can also add mobility workouts and strength training sessions to your running plan. 

Our Pilates plan will help you get started with Pilates and stay consistent with your training. If you change plans, you won’t lose your progress with your Pilates plan. 

All sessions are led by Coach Emily Young and are specifically tailored to runners’ needs. They’ll help you reduce your risk of injuries and improve your running performance. 

To get started, head to Manage Plan and configure your Pilates plan.

Choose your Pilates day

Pick a day when you’ll do your Pilates workout. The day you choose for your Pilates session will stay the same every week, helping you build consistency to improve your posture and core strength. 

Choose a day that suits you based on your own schedule and preferences, ideally a rest day or a day when you do an easy run. Here’s what you need to consider: 

  • Rest day: It’s a good idea to schedule your Pilates workout on a recovery day. This way, you’re still engaging in strength-building physical activity but without putting additional strain on your muscles, which do need rest days to recover.

Low-intensity days: Alternatively, you can do your Pilates workouts on a day when you do an easy run; this helps prevent overexertion while still giving you all the benefits of Pilates we mentioned above.

Our Pilates plan progression

Our Pilates plan features 26 workouts led by Runna Coach Emily Young. They’re specifically created for runners and will help you improve your overall core strength, posture, and balance, thus improving your running performance. 

Each session takes 30 minutes to complete.

Whenever you switch plans or start a new plan, Runna will automatically save your progress and transfer it across plans.

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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Pilates, mobility work, strength training, cross training: What’s best? 

In short, all of them. 

Each type of workout you add to your running program – be it Pilates, strength training, mobility work, or cross-training – will help you become a stronger and faster runner overall. But, obviously, you need time to recover, too, so make sure you factor that in. 

Here’s how the different types of training help: 

  • Pilates is ideal if you want to improve your core strength, balance, and breathing control. This will also help with muscle imbalances and injury prevention. 
  • Mobility exercises help you improve your flexibility and your joints’ range of motion. As a result, your stride will be more efficient and you’ll be able to reduce the risk of running-related injuries.
  • Strength training is instrumental in helping you become a better runner by improving your running economy, endurance, and speed. By strengthening your muscles, tendons, and joints, you’ll also keep niggles and injuries at bay. 
  • Cross training helps make your training more enjoyable and fun, especially if you’re recovering from an injury or simply need some time off of running. Simply pick a sport you like doing, such as hiking, rowing, swimming, or cycling.

If you’re using Runna, you can add Pilates, strength training, and mobility workouts to your running program and keep everything in one place and keep your progression across plans. Simply go to Manage your plan to add the types of training you want to do. 

Your choices on what types of workouts to add to your running program will depend on your goals: 

  • If injury prevention is your main concern, or if you’re recovering from an injury, focus on strength training and mobility work. 
  • Want to improve your core strength and running economy? Consider adding Pilates and strength training to your plan.
  • For overall fitness, to avoid burnout and make your training program more interesting, cross training is ideal. If you’re recovering from a running-related injury, it’s also a top choice, along with the mobility and strength exercises that you get from your physiotherapist. 
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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.

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First week free. Cancel anytime.

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

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“Very grateful I stumbled across this game changer! Out of years of different running programs, this is by far my favourite; it’s been so enjoyable”

Ash

“The plan has given me an achievable goal to work towards which has kept me motivated and I actually look forward to my running days!”

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"Training program really adapted to my goals that got me motivated to run again and get ‘back in my groove’."

Eric

"Only into week 2 and loving It already. The structure is great and the app is so easy to use - also big appreciation for the playlists. V happy to be on a runbuddy plan for the next few months!"

Jenn

"Great personalized running plan so I can really be intentional with my training! The Runna team have all been super responsive and helpful making sure the plan and paces are right for me, and there to answer any questions. Great value, would highly recommend!"

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"Excellent app, so easy to use! The training programs are fantastic. Can’t recommend enough!"

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

Is Pilates good for runners?

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Which is better for runners, yoga or Pilates?

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Is Pilates good for endurance?

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How often should runners do Pilates?

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How do you combine running and Pilates?

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Graphic with two phones and a smartwatch featuring Runna app.

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.
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