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

    I'm glad you found the information helpful.

    Something to bear in mind - flexibility training isn't a one size fits all methodology.

    Don't be afraid to change the approaches I prescribed in this thread.
  2. Killer Priest

    Killer Priest New Member

    Not a lot of Video tutorials of stretching techniques and routines in this thread. I am a visual learner and am interested in dynamic stretches and static active stretches. any links?
  3. NCS

    NCS New Member

    Hello Sir,

    Thank you for the amazing information.
    I got a question.
    I do muay thai.
    I have chronic tendinitis on my elbow so I stopped boxing and focuse more on strength exercises like deadlifts,squats,some bench press.
    I stopped kicking for a while too.

    1) Is it possible that before every strength workout Ill do the dynamic stretches followed by relaxed and Isometric stretches AFTER the workout? By the way can I do them every day ? Even if my legs are sore after a deadlift or squat day ? You say within 15 minutes after waking up,can I still do them if my legs feel sore ?

    2) Can I do those stretches on my rest days ? When I dont do any strength exercising or is it better to let the legs "recover" from the stretching.

    I really want to focus on my strength and at the same time get the flexibility on point so I can return strong when my tendinitis finally disapears .

    Sorry for my english.

    Thanks again,greetings

  4. Respect4AllArts

    Respect4AllArts New Member

    Greetings all.

    Firstly much props to Van Zandt for this amazing thread!!
    This is in fact the sole reason I joined this site (still sorting profile so bare with me!)

    Apologies in advance for a noob question but I just wondered...

    During these Dynamic Stretches such as the Side Leg Raise and the Front Leg Raise, should the moving leg be entirely relaxed or tensed or slightly tensed?

    Also, I'm not trying to be pedantic but you know you say these are most effective within the first 15 minutes of waking...

    Say your body clock is used to getting up at say a certain time for work etc and you know sometimes you may wake up like 30 mins before this but you may not want to get up yet if you can the extra half hour sleep...

    If you do fall asleep again, is it ok to do the stretches half an hour later when you do get up for your alarm... or is the body almost cheating itself and it's best to fight it and just get up earlier when you do wake up first time round and then do them instead of trying to go back to sleep?

    Apologies if this sounds silly!

    Thanks in advance
  5. iovitas

    iovitas New Member

    It's better to mobilize yourself to get up earlier. Instead of 15 of walking you can do a 5 minutes worm up (jumping jacks, high knees etc.).
  6. Van Zandt

    Van Zandt Mr. High Kick

    A YouTube search will return plenty of instructional videos.
  7. Van Zandt

    Van Zandt Mr. High Kick

    Warm-up, dynamic stretches, strength exercises, isometric stretches and relaxed stretches. In that order always. Remove the exercises you don't want or need.

    You can do relaxed stretches every day, even when sore. I'd avoid doing dynamic or isometric stretches when sore.

    You can do relaxed stretches on rest days, even when sore. It may even improve recovery. It all depends on how hard you push them and how sore you are. No harm in total rest either.
  8. Van Zandt

    Van Zandt Mr. High Kick

    Try all three. See which one gives you best results.

    There's some data to suggest that your nervous system (which controls muscle length) starts regulating itself upon waking, and it takes around 15 or so minutes for it to restore predominant levels of muscle tension. This gives you a window of opportunity to influence range of motion for that day. It won't be a great deal more than if you waited after the window, when your nervous system has "returned to normal" after a good night's sleep. And you will, eventually, make the same progress over time. Taking advantage of those initial 15 minutes lets you reach your goal a bit quicker.
  9. Boykie

    Boykie New Member


    I'm still reeling after having gone through the original post and all the replies in the rest of the thread.

    Thanks for starting this thread Van Zandt. Much appreciated.

    For now, I'll dash down and start work on the tips so generously shared here.
  10. Zeek805

    Zeek805 New Member

    Newbie question. I searched the forum and did not find the answer, so please forgive me if this has been answered before.

    I read in the original post that if you are sore from a previous workout, you should not do dynamic streches. I also read that you should never skip a morning dynamic stretch workout or else you go back to the beginning. I'm trying to stick to the above flexibility routines, but if I am sore from a particularly hard leg workout, am I going back to the beginning every time I skip a morning dynamic workout?

    Second question. On rest days, is it ok to just do the morning routine, or should I do morning and evening stretching?

    Thanks in advance for the help.
  11. Patrick Smith

    Patrick Smith Tustom Cuser Uitle

    Hi Zeek805,

    As a general rule, light stretching of a mildly sore muscle can be a good thing; however, if you're closer to being extremely sore, I would keep the dynamic stretches very light and build the intensity carefully. (i.e., start even lighter and progress gently) Remember, a sore muscle is quite literally a damaged muscle. Working out is controlled trauma. If you overdo that, it's just damage, i.e. an injury. I don't recommend you working out so hard that you're left incredibly sore to begin with, but if you are extremely sore, you should be walking on eggshells because your body is not at its normal capacity for abuse. Make a wrong move and you can tear something easier than normal.

    As for the AM and PM routine, the general rule is that if you're going to do them, do both. That said, I've experienced perfectly fine results from just doing the morning routine. This particular part of the routine is somewhat "Your Mileage May Vary"...
  12. Zeek805

    Zeek805 New Member

    Thanks for the reply.

    I wouldn't say that I am extremely sore, just a mild soreness from a hard leg workout. I just started Van Zandt's workout last week,so my legs are going though some new routines. My biggest concern is overdoing things and injuring myself.
  13. Terry7987979

    Terry7987979 New Member

    Really great information about flexibility, it needs lot of effort to increase flexibility. I've been following many workout plan for a couple of months to increase flexibility in my body.
  14. jesscold88

    jesscold88 New Member

    Thank you very much for this information, when I start to deal with my flexibility, but it will not be soon))
  15. PaganRage

    PaganRage New Member

    Is there an age limit to achieving the splits. I'm 48 and my flexibility is really bad, wondering if it's something that can be achieved.
  16. Van Zandt

    Van Zandt Mr. High Kick

    There is no age limit to gaining flexibility but progress is generally slower from age 40 onwards. Allow yourself 18 months to 2 years and you will get there with rational training.
    axelb and Mitch like this.
  17. PaganRage

    PaganRage New Member

    OK, noob question here. I know how to do the sid split stretch but I can't find any detailed instruction on the front split stretch. Could anyone point to a detailed video or instruction on how it's done from an isometric point
    of view.

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