Yoga for hikers

Through this ‘Yoga for Hikers’ sequence, we aim to gain flexibility in order prevent injury as much as we can on our muscle and joints, which can also help us improve our efficiency in movement. This also helps us after a long day hike to recover quicker and reduce any muscle tightness and soreness afterwards. I have also added some core stability poses. yoga 3

This sequence is meant for people who have experience in yoga and understand the risks that might come with doing the poses incorrectly. If you are total beginner, I do recommend you start taking yoga classes and perhaps 1-on-1 sessions to make sure you have the basics right and prevent injury.

About me: I am very much an outdoors person, but I have used stretching almost religiously after every hike, with the importance of warming up beforehand as well. Till date, I have completed 300 hrs of Yoga Teacher Training. If you are looking for more info on how to start getting into yoga or incorporate it as part of preparing for the mountains, feel free to contact me;


Pose No. of breaths Good for Notes
Sit on blanket or soft bolster
Hip openers:

·         Cradle

·         Pigeon (support hips with blanket if needed)

·         Crossed legs and placing hands in front

·         Breathing Chest and Belly

·         Three-Part Yogic Breath


3-5 breathes each step 1.      Relax your shoulders.

2.      Put your hands on your tummy, inhale on to your tummy and exhale, letting the air out

3.      Put your hands on the sides of your ribs and inhale, feeling them expand and then exhale

4.      Put your hands on your chest, inhale and exhale


Cat Cow 5 Abdominal


1.      Go on all fours; i.e. place your hands and knees on the floor

2.      Your shoulders should be on top of your hands

3.      Inhale and look up to the sky or ceiling and raise your buttocks.

4.      Exhale and drop your head and make an arch with your back.

5.      And repeat for 5 times.




Here is a time for you to prepare for the hike mentally, imagine yourself taking those steps, reaching the top of the mountain or reaching the end of the trail, whatever your goal is. The mental state is more important than the physical aspect of hiking and sports. It’s about being “IN THE ZONE”. Better visualing your hike or climb, can better prepare you mentally.


This is just a pointer, or else feel free to listen to the birds chirping or do what best helps you get in your meditative state.


1.      Surya Namaskar 1


6 times

(3 x 2)







+ Warrior 1


+ Warrior 2

3 breaths for downward dog


10 breaths for plank


10 breaths for the warrior poses – each side

Hip Flexors




·         These poses might take time to master, best to ask for advice from a yoga teacher near you.

·         From Down Dog, you may lift your right leg up on the fourth inhale and bring leg forward.

2. Uttanasana



5 Hamstrings ·         Hands behind legs.

·         Feet close to each other.

3.  parsvottanasana





5 For the hamstrings


·         Back foot is 45 degrees

·         Back straight

4. Parivrtta Trikonasana

(Revolving Triangle)


5 Hamstrings



·         Twist comes from spine
5. Prasarita Padottanasana, variation

Open legged bend forward




10 Breaths Hamstrings








1.      Place your hands on your hips

2.      Open your legs wide (wider than hips)

3.      Toes are turned inwards

4.      Bend knees slightly

5.      Bend forward and touch the ground


6. Extended Wide Squat



5 Hips

Lower back



1.      Widen your feet as much as your hips

2.      Keep your heels on the ground

3.      Start bending down as much as you can

4.      Bring your hands together in Namaste



5 Back




·         Bend knees slightly

·         Straight back

·         Hands on your sides on the ground


9. Paschimottanasana



5 Hips


·         Point here is to stretch the hamstring, don’t force trying to tour your toes

·         Use a strap around your feet to prevent injury

10. Urdhva prasarita padasana



5 Core ·         Arms to the sides on the ground

·         Raise legs 30 seconds at 90 degrees, then for 15 seconds at 60 degrees and  then 15 secs 30 degrees

11. Setu bandha



5-10 Thorax





·         Keep your knees on top of feet

·         Life buttocks to the sky


Figure Four


5-10 Hips


Lay on back and place one leg (90 degrees) on top of the other and press towards you to feel the stretch

Happy Baby


5 Hips

Lower back


·         Hold the outside edges of your feet

·         Pulls them downwards

·         Keep arms outwards




5 Glutes




·         Lay down on your stomach

·         Place hands at shoulder level

·         Inhale and raise your upper body

·         Thighs tight on ground

·         Look up

·         Avoid compressing your shoulders

14. Child pose





Support neck if needed with a blanket
Place blanket under knees and do savasana


·         Place blanket/bolster under your knees to avoid increasing curving of the lower back

·         Some people need a bit of elevation for their neck



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