Have you just started to run regularly and want to know some easy beginner stretches for runners? This video covers some easy exercises for you to try out.

Watch the video or read more below:

Easy Beginner Stretches for Runners

Exercise #1: Hip flexor with Side-bend

Why do this?

This exercise targets the front of the hips, which can be tight. If you don’t have the full range of movement around the hips, you’ll be missing out on using your power muscles to help drive you forwards. If you don’t have the forward drive, then you’re likely to be running slower than your full potential.

How to do this:

You don’t need any equipment. Start in high-kneeling, having a rolled-up mat or towel under the knees for comfort.

Place your right foot in front of you, keeping your hips facing forwards. Push your hips forward and look for a stretch sensation at the front of the left hip.

Added extra stretch: Sweep your left arm up and lean your body to the right side. This will add a stretch down the left side of the body and into the front of the hip.

Repeat: 5 – 6 times.

Exercise #2: Hamstring stretch (back of the thigh)

Why do this?

If the back of your legs is tight, it may be reducing your stride length, which could mean you’re not pushing yourself forwards as effectively as possible.

How to do this:

This exercise targets the back of the thigh. Start in a high-kneeling position and bring your right foot in front of you, straightening the knee. Breathe out as you try to touch the right toes, breathe in as you return upright. Look for a stretch down the back of the leg.

Repeat: 5-6 times.

Exercise #3: Calf stretch

Why do this?

The calves are another muscle group that helps push you forwards when running. If these muscles are tight, you won’t be working at your full potential.

How to do this:

This exercise is in standing. Start with the right foot in front and the left foot behind you (step-standing). Straighten your left knee and bend the right knee, looking for a stretch at the back of the left calf.

Important when stretching the calf muscle:

There are two calf muscles to target, so you need to have the knee straight (for the first calf muscle) and repeat with the knee bent (for the second calf muscle).

Repeat: 5 x 20-second hold

BONUS Stretch:

Non-traditional stretch: Rotating the hip

Why do this?

If you have reduced hip rotation it could be causing aches and pains in the low back, hip, or knee. Even if you don’t have pain (which is a good thing!), the reduced rotation will make it hard for you to effectively recruit muscles around the hip, which ultimately means you’re working harder at running.

How to do this:

Sit down with your hands behind you, knees bent and feet on the floor. Place your left foot further out to the left side and bring your left knee over to the right, before easing off. Keep your hips on the floor.


Please make sure your knee feels comfortable. Try shifting the foot position to see if you can find a more comfortable spot.

Repeat: 5 – 10 times.


Start with these easy stretches for runners and see how you do. Try and make the stretches fairly regular in your routine, 2-3 times a week.

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Trying out different exercises is key to improving and maintaining the body’s flexibility, which in turn can help with recruiting muscles efficiently.

If you’ve got any questions on the above, then please let us know (click for contact details).

Remember – Listen to Your Body!

Please remember to listen to your body. Get any aches and pains checked out sooner rather than later.


As with all information given for exercises and exercise programs, when using our exercise videos or information, please use your common sense and don’t do anything that will hurt you. By performing any fitness exercises, you are performing them at your own risk. PhysioFit Health will not be responsible or liable for any injury or harm you sustain as a result of information shared on our website or YouTube channel. This includes emails, videos, and text. Thanks for your understanding.

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