The beginner's guide to flexibility

Discussion in 'Health and Fitness' started by Van Zandt, Feb 6, 2009.

  1. Van Zandt

    Van Zandt Mr. High Kick

    Like I said, if yoga is your thing then I'm not going to try and stop you.
  2. Albi Dacdil

    Albi Dacdil Valued Member

    I never assumed you were trying to stop me. I just thought this was a forum of learning, sharing knowledge and information. I make no attack upon you by sharing what I've learnt, and reporting my experiences, even if contrary to what you know. I keep an open mind and am always willing to learn. Yoga is not my thing. Patronizing :D No, I could care less. My thing is to treat my chronic pain. I will use whatever works to achieve that end, whether yoga, or anything else. If would happily drop yoga if it didn't work to that end.
  3. Albi Dacdil

    Albi Dacdil Valued Member

    How has it gone with the book I heard mention of in another thread?
  4. Madao13

    Madao13 Valued Member

    Van Zandt, I have read some of your older posts here, where you said that relaxed stretches are detrimental to people's strength and that can't help if the aim is to do a split cold.
    Since these posts are about 3 years old I've been meaning to ask you if you still think the same or something has changed.
  5. Van Zandt

    Van Zandt Mr. High Kick

    I'd advise you to read my latest reply in the 'Success' thread.

    THEFOREVERMAN Banned Banned

    Sir, I try these all the time, but I can't get a large effect for my(jumps)... I forgot what the formal name is... The inner thigh. I want to get better height for a side kick but I'm limited by my flexibility. What can you reccomend to stretch easier?
  7. Smitfire

    Smitfire Cactus Schlong

    I tell you what...I could realy do with a new thread about flexibility.
    Something that summarises that latest thinking and protocols on how to develop it.

    I've injured my back, my hamstrings seem to be turning to cement and I've gone from someone that could easily head-kick cold 2-3 years ago to someone that is now reluctant to kick just in case something pops. :(

    I'm finding that even with the advice being offered here I've no real idea how to tackle increasing my flexibility. It's seems to have changed over the years and had so many inputs and ammendments.
    The thread's massive!

    I started weights last year (as an utter newbie) and felt I could only really do so because Stronglifts was so easy to follow. It's simple, doesn't have to much to remember and has a set structure to follow as you progress.

    A flexibility routine that offered the same would be great!
    But I'll be damned if can structure one myself. :(
  8. belltoller

    belltoller OffTopic MonstreOrdinaire Supporter

    I think it all here - and you're right, it is massive and it is spilling over with change, amendments, corrections, call outs, change order's - same as any living, breathing work-in-progress document where you've a number of people adding to it, principal author's making a few changes but leaving the structure intact - trouble is no one else may realise it.

    Those just coming on board will see the change-out but not understand that particular item for what it is and assume, falsely, that's all there is to it.

    There's no reference back to the original drawing.

    You're also unfortunately correct when you say that its impossible to structure a routine from it, which is a shame, because I believe its all here.

    Its just buried under itself.

    I know the feeling...exactly
  9. Simon

    Simon Administrator Admin Supporter MAP 2017 Koyo Award

    I'd like to know if Van Zandt feels the information at the start of the thread is still relevant.

    Is is just becuase the current level of thinking has changed his opinion, or do we now know the original programme is flawed.

    I still feel it's possible to be flexible without heaving heavy weights, you only have to look at top level Tai Chi practitioners to see that.

    Yes there is a strength there, but not a squat 2 x bodyweight type of strength.
  10. belltoller

    belltoller OffTopic MonstreOrdinaire Supporter

    Its a little more than that - though that's it in a nutshell.

    For example, there was much back and forth on dynamic vs static stretching, if my memory serves; then isometric stretching became another major artery altogether.

    The thing that a layperson such as myself could've done nicely with at that point was to have a multicolumn list of the various exercises that constitute static, dynamic, relaxed, isometric etc - the primary differences between them, caveats, special circumstances, pro tips, etc.

    Another thing - we'd been posting regarding hamstrings a while back - something I'd had a necessary stake in, I just found your 'Dynamic hamstring video'.

    Had no idea it was there...that and others like it could also be part of the 'lab manual' - I suppose we're looking at a small db programme by now, as there'd need to be some way to track changes, search by key word, author and links to vids such as yours.

    There could be a "panel" made up of members known for their respective expertise and/or their practical experience, etc., to take requests to add to the compendium, review them and vote or whatever for addition, deprecation - whatever agreed.

    Far fetched? Hope that makes sense FWIW.
  11. Madao13

    Madao13 Valued Member

    Pasmith, did you injure your back by doing weights?
    You have stopped lifting?
  12. Smitfire

    Smitfire Cactus Schlong

    Tricky to say really...I injured the same spot (right above the pelvis/sacro iliac) a year or more ago kicking a heavy bag without warming up (dumb).
    Facet joint apparently.
    Had physio on it and did core strengthening. Got mostly functional again.
    Started to get thigh/it band pain doing the weights (which could be related).
    I stopped the weights to help sooth with the IT band pain (did loads or foam rolling and stretching).
    Then just before Chrimbo I stepped off a kerb carrying my new baby, stumbled, and as I instinctively tensed, my lower back exloded in pain down both legs and up my spine. :(
    So it could be the original injury was still an issue, weights exacerbated it without me realising (I felt pretty good lifting overall) and then the stumble was the last straw.
    Currently I've done nothing more than walking for about 2 months.
    Still in pain though.
  13. Madao13

    Madao13 Valued Member

    Sorry to hear that man!
    I was following your lifting log and you seemed to have found your pace..
    I wish you have a quick recovery!
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2014
  14. takahura19

    takahura19 Valued Member

    I was active taekwondo player to 2012 than couldn't afford anymore, after year and a half of stop doing taekwondo I returned and Injured my knee, side and back ligaments, it was minor injury, but now when I am back in taekwondo for 2 months, after 6 months of rest I still can't do double kicks and jump kicks, so I am taking it slowely. Flexibility still limits me and I have like 50 cm in man split to the floor or even more. I don't know what to do a out it, but non flexibility made my 2 knee injuries and greatly limits my taekwondo skills. I am 186cm tall and 76kg and now due to gymnastics got really fit and muscular. For next 2 months I will be in team, than I will do taekwondo on street or in basement my aim is to achieve nice technique and speed of kicks. So if you cna give me some flexiblity exercises other than normal streeching and are very helpful would be very nice. I will be 24 yrs old now and I have chronical nonflexibility if u ask me. all best
  15. Patrick Smith

    Patrick Smith Tustom Cuser Uitle

    You sound pretty beat up, Takahura.

    Check out MobilityWOD by Dr. Kelly Starret @ It's completely free.

    If you have the money to spare, I highly recommend Kit Laughlin's products, particularly his book Stretching & Flexibility. A very worthy investment in my opinion, and it sounds like you need a change in your perspective towards flexibility and stretching in general (no offense intended). If you can get it, I highly suggest you do!
  16. takahura19

    takahura19 Valued Member

    Which topics sessions you advice me to look up on that mobilitywod website. I don't have spare money, I practice outside on bar and gymnastic rings most of time :/ Now got 2 weeks free of fitness so I am going there these days, focusing on leg exercises.
  17. Patrick Smith

    Patrick Smith Tustom Cuser Uitle


    THEFOREVERMAN Banned Banned

    Sorry for the short reply but...: have you considered Tai Chi? It is proven to strengthen your body all around and the mind.
  19. Van Zandt

    Van Zandt Mr. High Kick

    Just to let everyone know, in response to the confusion that has arisen from the tangents in this thread, I'm writing an update to my first post. I'm combing through 300+ replies here and all the other threads so bear with me if it takes a few days. To answer the question if I think the original content is still relevant: Yes. But you must understand that additional considerations would naturally arise because of the five years of testing and re-testing that have passed since it was written. There is no real "one size fits all" method to flexibility training (just like cardio and strength); most gains are the result of individual trial and error (and lots of it). There won't be new info per say. More like "what was once a hard and fast no-no is actually probably OK, but here are some warning signs on the label." Everything you need to know to maximise flexibility is already in this sub-forum. Think of it as a consolidation of all the answers to all the questions in all the flexibility conversations on MAP since the Age of Arrows in the Knee.

    Post below if your question really can't wait and I'll answer it in the meantime.
  20. belltoller

    belltoller OffTopic MonstreOrdinaire Supporter

    Thanks much, Herr Van Zandt. Some of us've been clamouring for just this. I know combing through 300 and some odd posts in your limited spare time will have you dead chuffed that you volunteered for this right around the time you're at the 1/3 mark but it is appreciated!

    Do you think a brief "Getting Started with Flexibility" or some such guide would be in order, being for the benefit of kinaesthetically gormless numpties like belltoller or is the proposed consolidation and reorg sufficient to be its own guide? ( ya, you haven't even started sorting your data yet and belltoller's already asking for additions :bang: :) )

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