The Guernsey Event Company


The following cover the yoga based stretches that my daughter encouraged me to incorporate into my training when I was preparing for my John O’ Groats – Land’s End adventure.  I go through the complete routine after every run and I believe you would find a real benefit if you went some way to incorporating them into your every post cycle routine.

If you need help with any of the information… holler

Please remember that the videos are representative.

Some of you will be more flexible others less … but it isn’t a competition.

Do the exercises to the best of your ability without straining or over stretching.

Don’t “bounce”

The thing about stretching … if you do the right side you need to balance things up and stretch the left side as well

How often? At least after cycling.

How long each exercise? Apart from Sun Salutations between 5 – 10 breaths each. The videos show how … not how long.

What’s different about Sun Salutations?  It’s a “flow” so each element … Down Dog and Pigeon apart … are held for a couple of breaths each.  Down Dog and Pigeon can be held much longer on the basis that calves and gluts probably need a good stretch.

Breathing? Controlled.  In through the nose and out through the mouth.

The whole sequence? 20 mins max.

If you don’t feel the benefit, particularly after the harder sessions you must let me know.

Stuart Hardie
07781 450352


Please remember that you must practice each posture with care and sensitivity toward your body.

Remember that every time you practice your muscles will respond differently to the last.

Never bounce, force or strain.

Always be conscious of your breathing, breathing in to create space and then as you exhale move further into this stretch until you find your edge.

Repeat this procedure to the point of knowing you’ve reached your limit for that posture for today

Most importantly you leave your ego behind when stretching. Going through this routine is not a competition!

  1. Stand facing a wall, about an arm’s distance away, feet shoulder-width apart, hands on wall at shoulder height, fingertips pointing upward
  2. Take a few steps back and bend at waist until spine is parallel with the floor
  3. Stretch hips away from wall, lift lower belly in and back
  4. Lengthen lower back, keeping pelvis stable. Stretch crown of head forward. Hold for 5 to 10 breaths … approx 1 minute

Pay off
Stretches: Shoulders, hamstrings, calves, lats, lower back, sacrum, hips
Strengthens: Core, spinal muscles, shoulder joints

Click Wall Dog for demonstration

  1. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, bend arms behind you and take hold of forearms or elbows
  2. Step right foot back 2 to 3 feet and turn right foot in 60 degrees to square hips
  3. Keeping hips stable, lengthen through spine, and draw low belly in
  4. Bend forward from hips as far as you can, while keeping legs and spine straight. Hold for 5 to 10 breaths … about 1 minute
  5. Repeat on opposite side

Pay off
Stretches: Hamstrings, shoulders, forearms
Strengthens: Legs, core, back

  1. Stand with legs spread about 4 feet apart, feet parallel, toes pointing slightly inward, hands on hips
  2. Keeping hips stable, lift spine up, draw low belly in, and lengthen lower back
  3. Bend forward from the hips, bring fingertips or palms to the floor
  4. Push into the floor with your hands, lift the chest and draw shoulders onto back, keeping spine long and legs active. Hold for 5 to 10 breaths.

Pay off
Stretches: Abductors, hamstrings, calves, lower back, sacrum, Achilles tendons, ankles, inner thighs
Strengthens: Core, legs, and ankles

  1. From Wide Leg Standing Forward Bend, walk both hands toward the right leg, keeping equal weight on both feet and hips even on one plane
  2. Gently twist from left side of belly toward the right. For a deeper stretch, place right palm flat on low back. Hold for 5 to 10 breaths.
  3. Place right hand on floor, untwist, walk fingers back to centre
  4. Repeat on opposite side.

Pay off
Stretches: Outer hips, oblique, shoulders, intercostals
Strengthens: Hip stabilizers, core muscles

Click Wide leg standing forward bend with twist for demonstration

  1. Sitting on the floor, bring soles of the feet together and bring the heels as close to your groin as you can while keeping the spine straight
  2. Press the soles of the feet together to allow thighs to descend toward the floor. Hold for 5 to 10 breaths. If you have trouble keeping the spine straight, sit on a folded blanket.

Pay off
Stretches: Inner thighs, pelvic region, hips, shins
Strengthens: Hips

Click Bound angle pose for demonstration

As I got into this routine I dropped a couple of Nighean’s stretches and added specifics for quads and gluts and these follow

  1. Standing on left leg with left hand holding on to a support for balance
  2. Bend right knee behind and grasp in right hand
  3. Knees together and pelvis thrust forward
  4. Push down with right foot into right hand and Hold for 5 to 10 breaths

Pay off
Stretches: Quads in particular

Click Quads Stretch for demonstration


I’ve added a couple of gluts specific stretches

Personally I much prefer the Pigeon Pose incorporated within Sun Salutations routine following. I find Pigeon really hits the mark but everyone to their own.

  1. Lying on your back, with knees bent and feet on the floor
  2. Cross right foot over left thigh
  3. Lift left foot off floor and thread right hand into and through space between thighs
  4. Left hand grasps right behind left thigh
  5. Pull back on left thigh whilst pushing on right thigh with right elbow and hold for 5 – 10 breaths
  6. Repeat on the other side

Head should always be on the floor during this exercise

Pay Off
Stretches: Gluts specifically
Strengthens: Legs, core, back

Click Gluts stretch for demonstration

The quality of your old age dependent upon the flexibility of your spine!

  1. Sit with left leg extended and with right hand on floor behind for balance
  2. Cross the right foot over the left knee and place on the floor
  3. Left arm extends into the air, bends and finishes with the outside of the elbow on the outside of the right knee
  4. From this position twist from the waist, the left elbow allowing a level of purchase
  5. As with all of these exercises hold for 5 – 10 breaths
  6. Repeat on the other side

Pay off
Stretches: Outer hips, oblique, shoulders, intercostals
Strengthens: Hip stabilizers, core muscles

Click Spinal Twist for demonstration


Completed in a flow of sequences and the following are the component parts

Mountain Pose
Stand with your feet slightly apart and parallel to each other.
Stretch your arms (but not rigidly) down alongside your torso, palms turned out, shoulders released

Upward Salute
Inhale and sweep your arms overhead in wide arcs bringing palms together, drop your head back, and gaze up at your thumbs

Standing Forward Bend
Exhaling, release your arms in wide arcs as you fold forward. Bend your knees allowing hands to reach the floor.
Release your neck so that your head hangs heavily from your upper spine.

Half Standing Forward Bend
Inhale and push your fingertips down into the floor, straighten your knees and lengthen front of torso as you arch evenly along the entire length of your spine and look forward

Exhale and step right foot back into a lunge. Centre your left knee over left heel and drop right knee to the floor. Drop/lower your pelvis

Plank Pose
Inhale bringing your torso forward until shoulders are over wrists and arms perpendicular to the floor step left foot back beside right. Try not to let your upper back collapse between the shoulder blades: press your outer arms inward, and then—against this resistance—spread your shoulder blades apart. Firm your tailbone against your pelvis and press your thighs up

Point Pose
Note … the 8 points are feet, knees, hands, chest and chin
Exhale dropping knees to the floor, butt in the air, lower chin to the floor and as you glide forward chest hits flor and continue glide as you …
Inhale into

Pressing pubic bone down into the floor and without using the arms, lift the head and chest off of the floor, keeping the neck in line with the spine … elbows close to your sides, press down into the palms and use the arms to support. Drop the shoulders down and back and press the chest forward. Keep the legs and buttocks strong, and keep the pubic bone pressing down into the floor.

Down Dog
Exhale … tuck toes under, spread your palms and fingers and, without changing position of hands or feet, press your hands firmly to the floor and imagine your torso being pulled to the sky by a rope attached around your waist. Knees can be bent, heels should be pushed to the floor … as far as that can be achieved. ……. Note … additional calf stretches achieved by alternating heels being pushed to the floor and as 1 pushes the other relaxes

Pigeon Pose
Extend right leg up behind you.

Inhale and Swing right leg back under the torso with bent knee finishing between hands and right foot under left thigh. Drop the hips if you can. From this position, with left leg trailing behind you, drop first onto elbows to the ground. As your flexibility improves lower forehead forward to the ground with arms stretched in front of you.

Note … for additional stretching pull foot away to the rear as you pull hands further forward

To complete briefly come back to Down Dog

To finish the Sun Salutation …

Inhale … and step right foot forward between hands into a Lunge and look forward

Exhale … and step left foot beside right into Standing Forward Bend

Inhale and sweep your arms overhead in wide arcs bringing palms together, drop your head back, and gaze up at your thumbs in an Upward Salute

Then repeat on left side and

Repeat twice more both sides Omitting pigeon

Click Sun Salutation with Pigeon Pose for demonstration