Sundays in my home are recovery days. Following Saturday long runs with my friends, Sundays are slower-and at times a bit more sore. I have found myself enjoying a yoga recovery program known as Yin, a quiet, prolonged hold stretch sequence with very little muscle contraction. The “Yin” is supposed to oppose and compliment the “Yang” of physical activity- the yang being active, boisterous movement-or how how I live out the rest of my week. The challenge here is stretch in a safe manner that does not injure the muscle or tendon.
If you seek out a yoga class I strongly urge you to find a Yoga teacher that has at least 500 hours of instruction training, and whom circulates the room during classes. The instructor should not remain up front through the entirety of the class. The instructor should also not encourage you to lock out any joints: knees and elbows especially. Locking joints puts a great deal of stress on the surrounding ligaments and can lead to injury. Stretching in general should be uncomfortable but not torture:avoid pushing through true pain.
Here is a general yoga recovery progression to open up the hips and encourage circulation:
This sequence flows smoothly and each position can be held for approximately 2 minutes. If you experience pain beyond a stretch sensation, back off of the stretch. Leg drain is my addition, and a great way to allow gravity to assist with inflammation in the legs. This position is held for 5 minutes.
Enjoy, and make your day great!