01454 314 460 / M. 078 4645 2000 hayley@hjtherapies.co.uk

Strength and Conditioning for runners

Strength and conditioning training isn’t just about lifting weights, it promotes movement quality, proper mechanics/technique and is individual to exercises that will benefit your movement, ability and goals.

We have made a strength training programme for runners to:

  • reduce injury risk
  • improve performance
  • increase strength to assist healthy joints and muscles!
  • Promote body awareness
  • Educate you on strength training, balance, coordination exercises which will benefit your performance.
  • Physically prepare and condition your body to cope with the demands of your sport.

Running requires continuous and repetitive cyclic movements. Often, distance runners complete high volumes of training each week with minimal rest but also, without incorporating any strength work or training to accompany their running schedule and so run into muscular imbalances, injuries and training plateaus!

Follow our strength and conditioning for runners video to see and feel the benefits!



Pre-activity warm up:

Banded clams:

Banded clams are performed as pre-activation to prepare for your strength training exercises. This helps strengthen the hip (gluteus medius) and muscular imbalances to provide stability when running.

Perform 2 rounds for 10 reps.

Side lying abductions:

This helps to strengthen the hip (gluteals) at abduction. Important for running to stabilise at each stride and correct muscular imbalances.

Perform 10 reps each side

Standing band clock reaches:

The clock reaches train your balance. Important for each strike and stride to prevent injuries at the ankles, hips and knees. Each step to 12, 3, 6 and 9 on your imaginary clock, uses your glutes to activate and stabilise your hip to keep neutral and strengthen at the hips whilst balancing.

Perform 4 times each way



This is an active stretch exercise to mobilise the hamstrings, calves and back which are predominantly used in running. Not only does this open up the tight posterior muscles, this also engages your core to brace and create pelvic stability.

Perform 10 reps


World’s greatest stretch:

This exercise really is the worlds greatest stretch! It helps to open up your hips, inside of your thighs, lower back and thoracic spine and opens up your chest to improve your mobility. This helps to prevent injury from muscular tightness.

Perform 10 reps either side


Landing exercises:

Standing tall squat drop:

Force absorption occurs a huge amount with each step in running, this exercise helps runners absorb the force from the hips and transfer efficiently and reduce injuries. Dropping into the squat at the bottom by attacking the floor with the drop, teaches you to use your glutes with hip bend and slight knee bend to prevent the often, dominant quads from taking over.

Perform for 5 reps.

Lateral hops:

This exercise also helps force absorption at the ankles but also creates ankle stiffness at the tendon. The achilies tendon acts as a spring and allows us to have short contact times with the ground when running. This creates a springy stride improving our running efficiency and reducing injuries. Performing these in lateral movement helps stability, strength and awareness at the ankle to prevent ankle sprains and react quicker to uneven surfaces when running. Our training should include exercises in different planes of movements!

Perform for 5 reps

Main session:

Goblet squats:

This exercise helps develop lower limb and hip strength and helps better movement patterns and mobility. The squat teaches you to load the hips correctly and not let the quadriceps take over which can cause knee pain.

Perform 2 x 8 reps

Press ups:

The involvement of arms in running is just as important as the legs. This exercise helps strengthen the upper body and engage core to help with better running posture and arm drive strength.

Perform 2 x 10 reps

Reverse lunges:

This exercise requires coordination, balance and posterior chain (hamstring, glutes and pelvic stability) strength, all of which are needed during running. It helps strengthen those important muscles in running to provide better technique, control and strength at the lower limbs to prevent injuries.

Perform 2 x 10 reps

Hamstring bridge and hold:

This exercise builds again, that all important posterior chain to strengthen in isometric hold at the top of the movement (meaning no change in muscle length but tension held under time). It helps the hamstrings tolerate load to reduce injury but also aid the extension phase in running.

Perform 2 x 8 reps

Steps ups:

This is performed on a small step at the gym, stairs or books at home. The exercise replicates the running movement by single leg action and using the core, pelvis and legs to engage together to create stability and strength in this single leg position.

Perform 2 x 6 reps



Deadbugs assist core and pelvic stabilisation whilst moving the arms and legs (same as running). This teaches you to engage your core and create a stronger more stable base whilst moving your limbs. This will help postural dysfunctions such as the hyperextended lower backs when we run to become more neutral and the core will support this.

Perform 2 x 15 reps

Side plank:

This exercise again, furthers the core engagement and pelvic stabilisation. It uses the obliques as well as glutes to hold your body in alignment and strengthens the core to minimise too much rotation when running and also to help transfer forces from the limbs to the core.

Perform 2 x 15