Health and Fitness Lifestyle

YOGA Special – Quintessential Quads

YOGA Special – Quintessential Quads

After a hike up a mountain and a few laps in the bike park a few weekends ago, I was feeling it everywhere, but especially in my thighs! These were the poses I chose to help stretch out my quads.

Caution! If you have a knee injury, these can cause tension so you should have a chat with your medical professional first.

Vajrasana and Virasana (Thunderbolt and Hero pose)

Start slow – these poses may look easy, but depending on the degree of openness you have in the quads, knees, and ankles, these two poses may not be as easy as you first think.

To begin, bring the shins to your mat, toes untucked and sit on the heels. The knees and the ankles are close together, making sure the toes, especially the pinkies, press into your mat.

Place the hands on the tops of the thighs and take 10-30 deep, steady breaths here in thunderbolt. If you are feeling very uncomfortable in the knees and/or ankles, feel free to add some padding! This could mean a blanket under the shins, rolled up under the knees or the ankles, or a bolster/cushion between the hips and the ankles to give yourself some more height.

If you’ve also been doing some hiking or running or high-heel-wearing, my favourite variation to stretch the feet is to tuck all the toes (taking extra care to make sure the pinkies are tucked – those little guys don’t always like to) and sit on the heels. Try to manage 10 slow breaths here; it can be very intense.

yoga
Vajrasana and Virasana (Thunderbolt and Hero pose) with some helpful variations if you are having trouble. Pic:©Brogan Kiss

Barring any serious tension in the knees, widen the ankles and allow the hips to sink to the mat between them, keeping the knees close together and pressing them to the mat.

Again the hands come to the thighs, breathing deeply for 10-30 breaths.

Note: If you are having trouble sinking the hips to your mat without the knees lifting or feeling very tense, elevate the hips with blocks or blankets. (See Hero Variation)

 

Ardha supta virasana (Reclined Half Hero pose)

A wonderfully passive way to find a deep stretch in the quad, begin seated, tucking your left ankle to your left hip. Your left toes are untucked, and your left knee is pointing forwards as you press it down into your mat, like we just did in hero pose.

Two options for your right leg – either extend the leg straight with the foot flexed, or bend the right knee placing the sole of your right foot on the mat at a distance that feels comfortable for you.

Bring your hands to the mat just wider than the hips and being to walk them backwards. Actively press the left knee and hips down, feeling a deep stretch along the top of the left thigh.

If you can move deeper without the knee lifting, your options are:

  • Bring the forearms down, then
  • Keeping the heart lifted, the shoulders and the back of the head come down, then
  • Keeping this gentle backbend, lift the arms overhead clasping opposite elbows

Wherever you are, take 10-30 breaths, then switch sides.

yoga
Ardha supta virasana (Reclined Half Hero pose). Pic:©Brogan Kiss

 

Anjanayasana Variation (Low Lunge with Quad Stretch)

Another more active way to stretch the quads while also opening up through the hips, shoulders and chest, is to come into a low lunge with the right leg between the hands.

Turn your left fingertips out about 45 degrees to the left as you press firmly into that hand (or come up to the fingertips to build strength in the hand and wrist).

Bend your left knee and reach your right arm behind you towards your outer left foot or ankle. If you aren’t quite able to reach your foot yet, reach for a strap or scarf and loop it around your foot.

A few options here – first, back out a little by lifting the hips up high as you pull your left foot towards you, aiming to connect your left foot with your bum as you gently open the shoulders to the right.

Breathe here for 5-10 breaths, or move deeper if you’ve made contact by keeping that contact as you sink your hips low towards your mat.

To find a little backbend, kick your left foot into your right hand as you open your chest towards the sky, being cautious of too much compression in your low back (think lift through the chest combined with a strong core).

Take 5-10 breaths here before going through the same sequence on the other side.

yoga
Anjanayasana Variation (Low Lunge with Quad Stretch). Pic:©Brogan Kiss

 

Editors note…

So there we have it folks. Yet another great Yoga class specially created for you by our Yoga guru, Brogan Kiss. These are some great options for you to stretch those quads. You can pick and choose which ones work best for you and your current ability.

Remember, go slow and enjoy it. If it’s too painful, then back it off. A good quad stretch is crucial to enjoying your hiking and biking adventures now and into your senior years.

Check out our other Yoga specials here or head on over to Brogans website!

See you outside!

Brogan Kiss

Brogan is a yoga teacher and student, geological engineer, hiker, runner, cyclist, lover of ice cream and salty hair and going on all kinds of adventures. She’s currently located on Canada’s northwest coast.

Check out her Instagram page @ instagram.com/brogankk/
Brogan Kiss

Latest posts by Brogan Kiss (see all)

Follow @tyresandsoles
  • The Michelin Wild Enduro tyres offer a magical mix of grip, strength and speed like no other tyre we’ve tested. 🤟 #Yiiew | Photo; @richardmcgibbon | Rider: Jason Lorch
  • Swipe right to see what can be stored in the Evoc HIP PACK PRO
.
📸@paulmasukowitz
.
#hippackpro⁣ 
#evocbike⁣ 
#evoc⁣
  • Remember to keep well lubed throughout winter!💦 Nobody wants to suffer from a stiff, dry and noisy drivetrain whilst out riding🙅🏻‍♂️The @peatysproducts Link Lube is an anti-corrosive, fast penetrating, water displacing oil which will find it's way into every nook and cranny of your chain. @jimtopliss 📷
~
#linklube #peatys #chainlube #drivetrain #happydrivetrain #dhmtbiking #bikeporn #lubeitup #lube #lubey #link #chain #oil #enduromtb #mtbenduro #wintermtb #dirtbike #dirt #bikelife #mtblife
  • ATTENTION TRAIL RUNNERS! Here's a sneak peek of Salomons latest Speedcross shoe.

THE EVOLUTION CONTINUES - SALOMON UPDATES THE LEGENDARY SPEEDCROSS TRAIL SHOE

For trail runners seeking, superior grip, stability and rugged protection from the elements. Runners who like to go fast on and off trails in tough and challenging terrain. For outdoor enthusiasts who want the performance of a running shoe with low-to-the-ground manoeuvrability and ultimate grip, look no further than the latest iteration of Salomon most popular trail shoe - The Salomon Speedcross 5. | Athlete/tester: Hannah Porteous | Photos: 📸 @richardmcgibbon 
@salomonrunning @salomon #trailrunning #sydneytrailrunners
  • OSPREY RENN 65 – PACK REVIEW

The Osprey Renn 65 is designed specifically for women as a lightweight, durable & comfortable pack, full of features to make the most of every hiking adventure. Featuring a LightWire peripheral frame that provides stability and comfort at a fraction of the weight of packs in similar ranges. The Renn 65 is a very capable and comfortable pack for single to multi-day hikes. 🤟 📸 @sydney_trail_sisters
  • Holy guacamole! @ospreypacks have done it again. This is one hell of a pack. The “Aether Pro 70” rocked our world, will it rock yours? We think it will. 🙌 FULL REVIEW coming soon!!! | 📸 @ianganderton
  • The MTB @deuter backpacks have been designed from the ground up to handle the specific needs of mountain biking such as; load carrying specifications, comfort, hydration and all-day performance on the trails. | Riders: @karen_eller_mountainbike and Tanja Hendrysiak riding the amazing trails around Lake Molveno! 💪🏼 -----
#deuterbackpack #itsgreatoutthere #traveladventure  #traveltales #outdoorlife #bicycletouring #bikinglife #mountainbiking
  • Dreamy loam is hard to beat when it comes to riding surfaces and the Aquila feels right at home digging through it! 💥 #onzatires #loam
  • Check out the full review in our bio 👍. Have you tried merino? Generally, you can get a bit smelly with synthetic fabrics whereas @monsroyale merino handles body odours very well. We experienced zero odours on the trails or in the car on the way home where it usually starts to pong. We felt as fresh as when we first pulled them on. The beauty of this is that you don't need to bring a change of clothing with you. You can hop off the bike and into the local bar or cafe without clearing the place out. | Photo: @richardmcgibbon
  • Fusing function and form, @monsroyale merino clothing is a natural, biodegradable and sustainable fibre that outperforms man-made fabrics. Mons Royale clothing is continually tested and refined to ensure it's the best match for your body and performance. | Photos: @richardmcgibbon
  • Testing the Michelin Wild Enduro tyres. Praise the knobbly gods. 🙌 These things are gripper than spider-man’s palm gunk. @michelinbicycle |  Photo: @richardmcgibbon
  • Topping up sealant made easy with these bad ass @peatysproducts tubeless valves!😍 Swipe to remove the core🔥
~
#peatysproducts #valves #yourholeisourgoal #tubeless #tubelessvalves #mtb #mtblife #stevepeat #mountainbike #roadbikes #bikeporn #trails #mtbtrails