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Flexibility and stretching: preventing sports injuries

source : sportsperformancebulletin.com

Flexibility and stretching: preventing sports injuries

Two sports physiotherapists show why flexibility is so important, and explain the science behind it

Achieving a certain degree of flexibility is absolutely critical for anyone involved in sports; otherwise there will be at some stage a breakdown in body tissues leading to an injury.

Don’t kid yourself if you never stretch: it is only a matter of when you get injured, not if. In addition, if you are too tight in certain parts of your body, you are functioning below your real potential – remember that performance enhancement is the second very important reason to stretch: flexible muscles perform a lot better than tight muscles.

From chess players through to Olympic gymnasts to Sumo wrestlers, we all must invest time in gaining and maintaining the flexibility that is specific to the requirements of our particular sport. It is the one side of the coin (the other being muscle strength and control) so often ignored by athletes, at their peril.

If you get soreness with stretching or have an injury that won’t heal by itself, always consult a physio who specialises in sport. Stretching can make an existing injury worse.

In order to improve flexibility, it’s important to first understand some of the science underpinning the principles of stretching. This is also critical in order to avoid direct injury from trying new stretches that you are unfamiliar with. The following article by my fellow sports physiotherapist Chris Mallac does just that. Ulrik Larsen

What is the science behind flexibility?Most coaches, athletes and sports medicine personnel use stretching methods as part of the training routine for athletes. Many would agree that it forms an integral part of training and preparation. However, most of the theoretical and practical factors in stretching are often incorrectly applied. The purpose of this article is primarily to provide an overview on the theoretical basis of stretching routines.

What is flexibility? De Vries defines it as the range of motion available in a joint, such as the hip, or series of joints such as the spine. This encompassing definition takes into account a number of important aspects about flexibility. That is, it deals with a joint or series of joints used to produce a particular movement, and it considers that flexibility is both static and dynamic in nature.

It is important to highlight some points regarding flexibility. First, flexibility is joint specific. That is, you cannot say someone is flexible just because they can touch their toes. The same person may not even be able to reach around and scratch the small of his/her back because their shoulder has poor flexibility. Second, flexibility is sport specific. You would not expect a front row rugby forward to have the same flexibility as an Olympic gymnast, because it is not required for his sport. In fact, in a contact sport like rugby, being that flexible would be detrimental to his body.

Components of flexibilityFlexibility has two important components: static and dynamic flexibility. 1. Static flexibility describes range of motion without a consideration for speed of movement. This is the maximum range a muscle can achieve with an external force such as gravity or manual assistance. For example, holding a hamstring stretch at an end-of-range position.

2. Dynamic flexibility describes the use of the desired range of motion at a desired velocity (usually quickly). Dynamic flexibility is the range athletes can produce themselves. For example, a javelin thrower or baseball pitcher needs a lot of shoulder rotational flexibility, but they also need to be able to produce it at rapid speeds of movement.

Here are some useful points:

a) Good static flexibility is a necessary prerequisite for good dynamic flexibility; however, having good static flexibility does not in itself ensure good dynamic flexibility.b) Dynamic flexibility is vitally important in those high velocity movement sports such as sprinting, kicking and gymnastics.c) Dynamic flexibility is limited by the ability of the tissues to lengthen quickly, and the inhibition of what is called the ‘stretch reflex’, which if present would act to limit the range of motion (more about this later).

 Why is flexibility important?Good flexibility allows the joints to improve their range of motion. For example, flexibility in the shoulder musculature allows a swimmer to ‘glide’ the arm through the water using shoulder elevation. This allows the joints to easily accommodate the desired joint angles without undue stress on the tissues around them. It therefore is essential for injury prevention.

Stretching also forms an integral part of rehabilitation programmes following injury. For example, it is accepted that a muscle tear will heal with scar tissue. This scar tissue tends to be functionally shorter and have more resistance to stretch than normal healthy muscle tissue. Therefore stretching is used at an appropriate time in the healing process to assist in lengthening this contracted scar tissue.

Good flexibility improves posture and ergonomics. Our bodies have a tendency to allow certain muscles to tighten up which will affect our posture. Vladimir Janda, a Czech rehabilitation specialist, describes a group of muscles in the body that universally show a tendency towards tightness and also being overactive in movements. Some of these include the hamstrings, rectus femoris, TFL, piriformis, adductors, gastrocnemius and quadratus lumborum. These muscles are often implicated in postural syndromes causing musculoskeletal pain.

Flexibility, because it allows good range of motion, may improve motor performance and skill execution. Think of a sprinter who needs flexibility in the hip flexors to allow good hip extension at toe off, and good hip extensor flexibility to allow necessary knee drive in the leg recovery phase of sprinting. Skill execution and reduced risk of injury will be greatly enhanced if the body has the flexibility necessary for that particular sport.

There is also an argument that stretching may reduce post exercise muscle soreness, or DOMS, by reducing muscle spasm associated with exercise.

Relative flexibilityShirley Sahrmann, an American physiotherapist, uses the term ‘relative flexibility’ to describe how the body achieves a particular movement using the relative flexibility available at a series of joints. She believes that in order for the body to achieve a particular range of motion, it will move through the point of least resistance, or area of greatest relative flexibility.

A good example is to think of a rower at the bottom of the catch position. In this position the rower must have his hands (and the oar) past his feet in order to generate the drive necessary to transfer force from his body to the oar. If for some reason the rower has excessively tight hips and can’t bend up (or flex) the hips (usually due to gluteal tightness), his body will find somewhere else to move to compensate for that lack of hip flexibility. More often than not, this rower will flex the lumbar and thoracic spines to make up for the lack of hip flexion. That is, the back has more ‘relative flexibility’, and therefore contributes to the overall range of motion. In this case however, the back will exhibit movement that is more than ideal, possibly leading to lumbar and thoracic dysfunction and pain.

The concept of relative flexibility is vital when understanding movement dysfunction in athletes. It is imperative that joint movements are not looked at in isolation, for other more distant joints will influence that movement. Try this simple test to highlight this point. Sit on a chair with your upper backed slumped (that is, assume a poor posture). Now, maintaining this position, try to elevate both arms above your head. Now straighten yourself up (assume a good posture) and try it again. Unless you have gross shoulder dysfunction, you will be able to elevate more with a straight back than a curved one. By assuming a slumped position, you prevent the upper back (thoracic spine) from extending. This extension of the upper back is necessary for full range elevation. Without extension, it is difficult for the shoulder to fully elevate. If you do this for long enough (months to years) eventually the lack of movement will attempt to be taken up elsewhere (such as the lower back, or the shoulder itself). This may eventually lead to breakdown of these joints due to the excessive movement they may eventually demonstrate.

What factors limit flexibility?Flexibility can be limited by what are called ‘active’ or ‘contractile’ and ‘passive’ or ‘non-contractile’ restraints. Muscle contraction is one of these ‘active/contractile’ restraints. Flexibility can be limited by the voluntary and reflex control that a muscle exhibits while undergoing a stretch, in particular a rapid stretch that activates the ‘stretch reflex’. As a muscle is rapidly stretched, a receptor known as a ‘spindle’ causes the muscle to reflexively contract to prevent any further stretch. If left unchecked, the stretch reflex would work to prevent elongation while the muscle was being stretched. A benefit of ballistic or fast stretching is that the nervous system learns to accommodate by delaying the stretch reflex until closer to end of range of movement (more on this later).

Furthermore, a resting muscle does not always mean that it is ‘resting’. Muscles usually exist with a certain degree of muscle ‘tone’. An increase in tone will increase the inherent stiffness in muscles. If you are scientifically minded, this describes the way actin and myosin remain bound and thus resist passive stretching of the muscle. The actin and myosin stay bound because of a constant low-level discharge in the nerves supplying that muscle. With actin and myosin unbound, a muscle should in theory be able to stretch to 150 per cent of its original length (in theory of course).

‘Passive/non-contractile’ restraints in the form of connective tissues will also limit flexibility. The passive restraints include the connective tissues within and around muscle tissue (epimysium, perimysium and endomysium), tendons and fascial sheaths (deep and superficial fascia). The important microscopic structure to consider in passive tissues is collagen. The way collagen behaves with stretching will be discussed shortly.

Other passive restraints include the alignment of joint surfaces. An example of this is the olecranon of the elbow in the olecranon fossa that will limit full extension (straightening) of the elbow. Other joint constraints include capsules and ligaments. The joint capsule/ligament complex of the hip joint is important in limiting rotation of the hip.

The nerves passing through the limbs can also limit flexibility. As a limb is taken through a full movement, the ropey nerve tracts also become elongated and become compressed. The nerve endings and receptors in the nerves trigger a reflex response that causes the muscle to increase its resistance to stretch.

Chris Mallac

Is Your Flexibility Determined Through Genetics or Training?

Is Your Flexibility Determined Through Genetics or Training? – Flexibility is the great bugbear for many weightlifters. Almost all recruits have to do remedial flexibility work when they start training in order to get the most out of themselves. Most trainees need extra work to get their shoulder, hip, knee, and ankle joints flexible enough to hit the proper lifting positions.Miss/Mr flexible that we were talking about above will probably fall into this category, so it's important not to Remember: Make sure your body is adequately warm (see our warm-up guide here) before Push the upper body up of the ground and towards the ceiling, keeping the hips firmly on the floor and…Flexible Muscles vs. Flexible Joints. To properly assess this safety issue, a distinction needs to be made: flexibility in joints is a different matter than flexibility in muscles. Joints are where one bone connects with another bone. Joints (i.e., the connecting bones) are held together by ligaments.

So you want to be flexible… — A Dancer's Life – Warm up properly and reduce the risk of sports injury with these warm up exercises and stretches. WARM-UP STRUCTURE There are four key elements, or parts, which should be included to ensure an effective and complete This process will help ensure the athlete has a minimal risk of sports injury.This article discusses the warm-ups conducted by elite and professional athletes, and also provides a practical model which can be used by anyone. Warm-ups most commonly last for approximately 10-30 minutes, meaning all desired content must be strategically factored in this short period of time.What About Warm Ups and Cool Downs? Are Oversplits Bad for Gymnasts? Are Ankle Weights Dangerous? It's crucial that proper methods are used to reduce joint stress and bias the stretching of soft tissue structures, especially in hypermobile athletes.

So you want to be flexible... — A Dancer's Life

Can Being Too Flexible Be Harmful? – Athletes warm up to loosen up muscles so that they don't pull anything. Your joints are anywhere on your body that you can bend i.e. your elbow or The bones form structur for our body, while muscles move the joints for movement. Depending on how flexible your joints are that is how flexible you…A good warm up prepares your body for more intense activity. It gets your blood flowing, raises your muscle temperature, and increases your breathing rate. Warming up gives your body time to adjust to the demands of exercise. This can improve your performance and help you get the results you want.A. important so you can run faster or reach farther. B. important to prevent athletic injury. C. only a concern for cross- training athletes D. naturally occurring as you move further into your fitness progam. If your joints are not flexible, they can tear with minimal movement.

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Athletes

Stop Stretching Your Hamstrings (UNTIL YOU WATCH!!) – What's up, guys? Jeff Cavaliere, ATHLEANX.com.
So we're going to address a very important
topic here. We want to find out if you are an ass, or
an ass not. I'm serious because if you were to look at
yourself in the mirror and be serious with yourself and honest, would you be someone
who has your butt sticking way out – and therefore an ass – or are you sort of an
ass not where everything is tucked underneath? I've got to admit, I'm a little bit of an
ass not. It's because of the position of our pelvis. I've covered this in a video on anterior pelvic
tilt – which is a very common problem. If you haven't seen it, you've got to watch
that video right here. It will tell you a lot about what to do to
correct that. However, hamstrings are going to be tight
in people that have anterior pelvic tilt, or posterior pelvic tilt. Asses, or ass nots. So we have to figure out a way to address
that hamstring tightness. Or do we? Because in that video I said you're going
to likely have tight hamstrings if you have an anterior pelvic tilt, but it's not something
you want to address. As a matter of fact, you want to do the direct
opposite. You want to continue to strengthen them and
not stretch them. So first of all, how would you tell if you
have an anterior, or posterior pelvic tilt? Most of all, you want to look in the mirror,
like I said. If you were to look and just lift your shirt
and look here, you want to focus on the waistline. So whenever you're wearing your shorts, or
your pants, what position is the waistline? It's normal to have a little bit of a downward
tilt to it. A little bit. About 3 or 4 degrees. If you had this severe downward tilt, then
you're dealing with that anterior pelvic tilt here, and that's actually not a good thing
to have. I know it looks better, but it's not a good
thing to have. It's an adaptive shortening that you want
to correct. At the same time, if you have a posterior
pelvic tilt you're going to likely see a level line here of the pants, or worse; it could
even be tucked under. So it starts to tilt up at the top. The second thing you can do is do an excursion
test. How much room do you get? So let's say I am an anterior tilter. If I tried to go into a more anterior tilt
– in other words, if I try to tip my pelvis down – I would only be able to get a few
degrees because I'm already anteriorly tilted. I have that much motion left to go in that
direction, but if you asked an anterior tilter to go posterior tilt, look what happens. I've got all that extra room because I had
a lot left in that direction. Same thing. If I'm already a posterior tilter. If you tell me to tilt and tuck my butt under
I'm not going to be able to get much further because I'm already there. That's where I walk around. I'd be an anterior tilt. I could probably get a lot more. Of course, it would probably feel tight, but
it's something I could actually move in. so do that test and figure out what you are. But now when you come over here, do you want
to stretch, or not stretch? Well, think about what's happening. Again, I said tight hamstrings, regardless
of whether you're anterior or posterior, if you are anterior, look what's happening. Your hamstring are attaching from the back
here – of your pelvis – down to your knee. To the outside of your knee, or behind your
knee. It may actually cross the knee. If my pelvis was anteriorly tilted and pushing
in this direction what's happening here to the hamstrings at the origin? They're getting longer, right? Because as this is tilting forward it's coming
up, and over, and it's causing my hamstrings to be tight. But guess what? The hamstring tightness is not causing this
anterior tilt. The hamstrings are being stretched because
of the anterior tilt. So the tight hip flexors on the other side
are pulling this down this way. That's making the hamstrings feel tight, but
you wouldn't want to stretch these because all that's going to do is let the hip flexors
on the front side do more damage, pulling you more into anterior tilt and causing the
problem to become worse. What you'd want to do is relieve the hip flexors
– which is what I made that video about – that will show you then how to reset the
pelvis back. Guess what happens? All of a sudden all this extra stretch goes
back down nice, and there's no more tension on the hamstrings. On the other side though, if you're a posterior
pelvic tilter you've got problems. You've got really tight hamstrings because
what's happening is, they're pulling down from here and we're pulling down more, which
is going to take our pelvis down into this posterior pelvic tilt. That 'no ass' look where it's going to tuck
underneath here. Your main problem is going to be tight hamstrings. Guess what else? Because it crosses the knee here it's going
to shift the focus – I'll show you right here – of your body to do this. I tuck under, I start leaning a little bit
more forward, my weight is going through my toes, by pushing through my toes what's active
as well? My calves. I start getting shortening in my calves and
my Achilles. So now I can't even get into dorsiflexion
of my feet here because my calves are tight. So you want to figure out a way to stretch
your calves at the same time that you're stretching your hamstrings, at the same time that you're
not allowing yourself to be in posterior tilt. You've got to go out of that. So how can we do that? Well, we can do what I'm showing you here. We can get our foot up against anything. Something that allows me to have elevation
here. Then the next thing I can do is, I want to
get my knee straight, obviously. So I'm getting stretched here, back through
the hamstring, and then back through the calves. Then I anteriorly tilt this way. So now the big key is, I put one foot back
which allows me to tilt more this way. You can see, I can go more into anterior tilt
right there. I don’t even have to do anything. I don’t have to do anything at all. I actually can just stand right there and
just feel the stretch, but then I want to reach up in front of me. Why am I reaching up if I'm trying to stretch
my hamstring? Because as I go down, I still want to be able
to keep my upper back elongated here. Because what happens when we get posterior
tilt? Everything rounds. You walk around like this. So we've got to get elongation through here. So I'm here, and I'm leaning up as I go – I
swear I must've ripped my fucking leg off – I'm going up here. I have tight hamstrings. Going up here, and I could already feel the
stretch. Again, we're stretching all the issues all
at one time. But that's only if you're dealing with the
'ass not' condition because if you are an ass, don't stretch them. Do something else. Worry about strengthening them. Guys, I hope the differentiation was made
here and made clearly. Again, I made that other video about anterior
pelvic tilt and a lot of guys found it helpful. You're going to want to see it because there's
a common problem, but this differentiates. I kind of glanced over it and I wanted to
make sure I went into it a little bit more in depth so you understand it. If you're looking for training programs that
teach you how to do these things the right way so you're not left guessing and you're
figuring "Oh, I guess I should stretch because the guy told me hamstring stretching is good. My hamstrings are tight, stretch them." Not all the time. You stretch them when you're supposed to stretch
them. You can find that over at ATHLEANX.com in
the ATHLEANX training system. In the meantime, if you've found this video
helpful leave your comments and thumbs up below. Let me know: ass, or ass not. It doesn’t really matter. You've got to figure out what the right thing
for you is to do. All right, guys. I'll be back here again in a few days. See you. .

How to increase Flexibility Fast! Get Flexible by Science – (32 Studies) – Hey everyone, I’m Yiannis Christoulas and
this video's question is what does real science have to say about increasing our flexibility
fast and easily.
In this video I will present you the most
effective strategy proven by 32 recent studies, and my personal experience as a coach and athlete. Let’s get started. So the first thing that I want you to understand
is that getting flexible is not about the type of the exercise you’re doing. The exercises that stretch the muscles that
you want, are all over the internet and are very easy to find. Just type the words “flexibility workout” or "routine" and you’ll have millions of results. The thing is, what are you going to do with them. It’s like searching for a good leg exercise
and finding squats. What are you going to do with them? Even though you know the right exercise you
still have to find the right weight, reps, sets, rest between sets and number of sessions per week to get the
results that you want. It’s the same with flexibility, it’s easy
to find the exercises, but they are only one component of your flexibility session. The others are the method that you’re going
to use, the time of stretch per set, the number of sets per session, the duration of rests
between sets and the number of sessions per week. Only if you set all these components right,
you will gain flexibility fast and easily. So without further ado let’s see what science
has to say about all these. So the consensus view of the scientists as
you already know, is that regular stretching increases range of motion. This is supported by numerous studies that
have tested the effects of various types of stretching on flexibility. But which of them is more effective in increasing
range of motion? The 4 big categories of stretching techniques
are: The dynamic stretching where the person moves
dynamically through his range of motion with controlled mobility drills, ballistic stretching which involves a less controlled muscular effort and uses a bouncing-type
movement in which the end position is not held, static stretching where you stretch and hold your position for a specific amount of time and Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation
or else PNF techniques. These techniques are performed mostly with a partner and are combined
by 3 different phases. A passive pre-stretch, a type of muscle activation
and a passive stretch again. Some of these methods are combined with different
techniques, but we use these 4 big categories to distinguish the main characteristics of
the type of stretching that we are using. If you are new to these terms and want a more
integrated description of these 4 types of stretching, I will have some relevant articles
from my blog linked on the description below. Now, the current literature suggests that static
stretching and PNF are superior in increasing range of motion compared to dynamic stretching
and ballistic stretching. Specifically, in studies that compared ballistic stretching with static stretching, static stretching was superior in increasing
range of motion. In addition, in a recent review from 2018,
where scientists compared the efficiency of all methods in terms of improving range of
motion, ballistic stretching was found to have the
smallest effect in comparison to all the other types of stretching. This doesn’t mean that you can’t increase
your flexibility with dynamic and ballistic stretching but only that you’ll have a smaller
positive effect in comparison to static stretching and PNF. Also, ballistic stretching is considered to
be the riskiest in terms of injury and some scientists suggest that it is no longer recommended. I personally believe that every type of stretching
is suitable for specific occasions and that ballistic stretching could be beneficial for
specific movements. So from the literature it’s clear that both
static stretching and PNF are very successful methods in terms of increasing range of motion. But which of the 2 is the most effective and
suitable for you? Right now there are studies which support
that PNF is better than static stretching, but also others that found no differences between them and
some that found statistic stretching to be better than PNF. A review on this topic from Sharman and coworkers
in 2006 conclude that PNF is the most effective means to increase range of motion by way of
stretching, particularly in respect to short-term gains in range of motion. On the other hand, in a review from Lepke
and colleagues in 2018, the authors came to the result that PNF stretching was not demonstrated
to be more effective at increasing hamstring extensibility compared to static stretching. Finally, in another review in the same year
that compared 23 studies with all stretching typologies, authors conclude that the static
stretching protocols showed significant gains when compared to the ballistic and PNF protocols. What I’m trying to say here is that the
results are mixed but the main point here is that both methods are very close in terms of increasing
range of motion. Slight differences that may have been found
between them will not make the difference on the average person in practice. For me the major difference is that static
stretching can be more easily applied by the person itself and in every muscle group. On the contrast, and as NSCA states in the
fourth edition of the essentials, PNF stretching is often impractical because most of the stretches
require a partner and some expertise. But even if you do it yourself it's much
harder and almost impossible to correctly apply it on some very important muscle groups
like the glutes and the muscles of the lower back. So for this reason and with the data that
we currently have, I think that static stretching is probably the most suitable method for the
average person out there in terms of increasing flexibility. But that doesn’t mean that PNF can’t have
an equal or in some cases greater result in range of motion. I just think that both methods
are very effective and close in terms of results, but static stretching is easier to apply on
yourself and in every muscle group. Now, knowing the right type of stretching
is just the beginning for a successful flexibility program. The next step is to look for the optimal parameters
of your flexibility session. These parameters are:
the time of stretching per set, the number of sets per session,
the duration off rests between sets and the number of sessions per week. Early studies of Bandy and coworkers in 1994
and 1997 showed that the optimal duration of a stretch is 30 seconds. In their study they used 15, 30 and 60 second-sets
and found that stretching for 30 seconds significantly improved range of motion while no increase
in flexibility occurred when the duration was increased from 30 to 60 seconds. On the other hand, a review that I mentioned
before from Thomas and colleagues in 2018 puts the weight on a different aspect of training. In this review the authors found that time
spent stretching per week seems fundamental to elicit range of motion improvements when
stretches are applied for at least or more than 5 minutes, where the time spent stretching
within a single session does not seem to have significant effects for range of motion gains. So the actual goal is to reach somewhere close
to 10 minutes per week total stretching duration while stretching more than 10 minutes per
week will not elicit more gains in your flexibility. If we combine these results with the two papers
of Bandy and colleagues, it would be fair to say that the optimal strategy would be
3 sets of 30 seconds and for 6 days per week. With this training regime you reach 9 minutes
total stretching duration per week and you are in agreement with both the findings of
Bandy and the big recent review of Thomas. If you can’t have so many sessions per week
and given the fact that the total duration is the most important factor,
you should try to make this time in less sessions. For example, 3 sessions with 3 sets of 60
seconds. This is a very effective protocol that I personally
use to my athletes and myself. So the number of sessions per week, the sets
per session and the duration per set are mostly determined by the total stretching duration per week
which is around 10 minutes. To my knowledge the duration of the rests
between sets hasn’t been studied yet. So I would say that anywhere between 1 to
2 minutes should be ok and it’s pretty much what was used in most of the studies I presented. And now, an essential clue for successful
stretching that I bet you didn’t know: This one came from Wyon in 2009. In their study, they had 24 adolescent
dancers in a 6-week intervention program that compared low-intensity stretching
with moderate-intensity static stretching on active and passive range of motion. According to them, Microstretching is a new
modality that reduces the possibility of the parasympathetic system being activated. The main finding of this study was that very-low-intensity
stretching had a greater positive effect on lower-limb range of motion than moderate-intensity
static stretching. If you are familiar with this type of static
stretching just forget about it. A gentle and controlled stretching with low intensity
will produce greater flexibility results as was found by Wyon and coworkers. Last but not least:
Warm up, Breathing,
and Periodization. Should you warm up before a flexibility session? It is common sense that you shouldn’t go
completely cold into a full stretch. For most people the simplest way to warm up
before stretching is to put your flexibility training in the end of your normal workout. That way, your muscles are already warm and
ready to go. But if you prefer to do your stretching separately
from your other workouts, you should take the time to warm up before your stretch. I personally use a 5 to 10 minutes low intensity
physical activity to increase my temperature and after that I do my whole flexibility session
with the Anderson method. In this method, you simply do an easy pre-stretch
of 10 to 30 seconds and then you go on a developed stretch for 30 to 60 seconds which is your
main training. This way I’m already warm in terms of temperature
and also easing into a full stretch. What about breathing? Always make sure that you gently breath out
during your stretch. Calm and slow breathing can help your muscles
relax and decrease the activity of neural reflexes that oppose your stretch. And last, what about flexibility training and periodization? I think is a simple but essential
concept that people forget when it comes to flexibility training. When you try to get more flexible you’re
not just doing a warm up routine or making a quick pass from recovery exercises. You are training your flexibility, so this
can be an independent training session throughout your day. As a training procedure, every 6 to 8 weeks
there should be a rest period of 3 to 5 days or a deload week where you will do 20% to
30% less than your typical training. So what you can personally do if you want to get more flexible, is select the muscles that you want to get more flexible and find the exercises that stretch them. After a 5 minute low intensity warm up get
right into your first set with the Anderson method. Pre-stretch for 15 seconds and then develop
stretch for 60 seconds. Repeat that for 3 sets and for 3 sessions
per week. After a period of 6 to 8 weeks you can test your results. So let's conclude what we know about flexibility training. Static stetching and PNF are both very effective methods in terms of increasing flexibility. Static stretching might have a slight advantage
over PNF because it’s easier to apply it yourself and in every muscle. Time spent stretching per week is more important
than time spent stretching within a single session so if you can, stretch regularly up
to 6 times per week, for 3 sets and 30 seconds every set. If you can’t, 3 sets of 60 seconds 3 times
per week will be equally effective. Very-low-intensity stretching seems to have
a greater positive effect on range of motion than moderate-intensity static stretching,
so don’t try to tear your muscles apart. Make sure to warm up before going to a full
stretch, if you don’t train your flexibility after your normal workout. Keep your breath calm during stretching and
maintain a rest period every 6 to 8 weeks of consistent flexibility training. So that's it guys, these are the general guidelines on how to train flexibility, but also keep in mind that I will make a video
specifically on how to do a split fast and easily. If you found this video helpful make sure to like the video and if you want more content like this, you can
subscribe to my channel. See you next time. .

7 Tight Hip Stretches – Ask Doctor Jo – Hey everybody, it's DoctorJo and cool Kali,
and today I'm, gonna show you my top 7 treatments for hip tightness.
So let's get started. So these stretches and exercises are for general
tightness not after a specific surgery, so make sure you are cleared to do these. So the first one that I like to do just to
get that tightness out of the hips is lying down on the floor, and if you can't get down
on the floor, you can do these in your bed or on the couch. And you're just gonna start off with the knee
to chest stretch. And it's just like it sounds. I like to leave one side bent up, but some
people keep it down, it's up to you. I think this just takes a little pressure
off your back if you've got some hip tightness, you might have some back tightness as well. So you're just gonna bring one knee up towards
your chest. If you have some knee issues, sometimes when
people grab up here it's a little painful on their knees to kind of push in to it, so
you can grab under here if you have some knee tightness. But just kind of pulling up towards you. And you're gonna hold this for 30 seconds. So getting that nice stretch in there. It shouldn't be too painful, if you've got
a little groin pain in there, just don't pull quite as hard. But again if you want a little bit more of
a stretch, some people like to grab up on top like that. So a 30 second hold. I would do both sides even if you only have
hip tightness on one side cause they're so closely connected. You probably want to do both sides. So 3 on each side for 30 seconds. So then the next one is going to be going
into a butterfly stretch. So this is gonna stretch out those inner thigh
muscles kind of the groin area. So with the butterfly stretch, you can do
it sitting up, or you can do it lying down modified. So just depending on how much tightness you
have. You're just gonna kind of put your feet together
out in front of you with your knees kind of opened out to each side. And then just bring your heels in towards
you to get that stretch. You want to keep your back pretty straight,
if you're coming down like this you're not gonna get quite as much of a stretch and you're
gonna have to work a little harder for the stretch. But if you keep your back pretty straight
up, you can get a better stretch. And just bring your heels in until you feel
a little bit of tightness in your groin area. Once you feel that tightness, you can either
hold it there for the 30 seconds, or if you want just a little bit more of a stretch,
if you kind of put your elbows on the inner thighs by your knee there, you can lean forward
and push down a little bit. And that's gonna give you even more of a stretch. Remember you don't want it to be painful. Stretching should be, you know you should
feel tension, you should feel pressure, but it should never be painful. So again holding that 30 seconds, coming back
up, doing that 3 times each. So then the next one is gonna be a piriformis
stretch. So the piriformis again has a lot to do with
the tightness in the hips, those rotational type muscles, so those are really good to
work out as well. You can stretch the piriformis a whole bunch
of different ways, you can also do it seated in a chair, you don't have to get down to
do it. But the easiest one that I like to do is just
take the side that you want to stretch and put your foot across your knee just above
like this. So it's kind of making a figure 4 position
right there. So keep your back straight, and you can do
either way to stretch. You can take the other foot and slide it up
towards you and you should feel that stretch in that piriformis area right there. Or you can just bring your whole body up,
but at your hips. Try not to curl your back cause then you're
not getting much of a stretch. So keep that back straight and then just lean
forward at your hips, and I'm getting a really good stretch right through my piriformis right
there. So again just holding it for about 30 seconds
and then doing that 3 times. Again I would do both sides just to kind of
get everything nice and loosened up. So then the next one is gonna be a hip flexor
stretch cause again, we're just kind of working all those muscles around the hip to get that
tightness out of there. Again there's a bunch of different ways you
can stretch the hip flexors. The best way I like to do it is getting kind
of into a lunge position, so make sure you're protecting your knees while you're doing that. So when you get into the lunge position, I
like putting a pillow underneath the knee that goes down. The knee that goes down is the side that you
want to stretch, so if I'm stretching this side, these hip flexors here, that knee is
going down. Put your other foot a little further out in
front of you so can get a good lunge forward. The key with the hip flexor stretch is you
want to keep your upper body upright. If I lean forward like this and stretch, I'm
not stretching my hip flexor at all. I have to keep my upper body upright, and
then shift my whole body forward. And then I'm getting that stretch right through
there. So again, it's a full stretch, it's that 30
second stretch, doing that 3 times, and again I'd really do both sides if you have time,
make sure you get that stretch on both sides because you want to equal it out. You don't want those imbalances in your hip. So when they're really tight get everything
nice and loosened up. The last ones are gonna be standing up. So with these last exercises, make sure if
you need to hold on to something, hold on to something. It can be a chair, a countertop, but if you
have a little bit of balance issues make sure you're holding on. So now you're just gonna go into doing some
hip circles while you're standing. So keep that leg nice and straight, and you're
just gonna, it doesn't have to be big circles, you're just gonna move it around in a circle
like this. So again, if you need to hold on to something,
if you feel like your balance is a little off, that's fine. Make sure you're staying safe. So I'd do like 10 one way, and then reverse
it and do 10 the other way. See, a little roll in there. So try and keep everything nice and tight. This one you definitely want to switch sides
cause as you can see, I'm standing on this side, I'm stabilizing, using those stabilizer
muscles, and then I'm moving this one. So then you would want to switch side cause
it's doing different exercises. So now I'm stabilizing this side and I'm actively
moving this side. So this one you really do want to switch sides
because you're getting a different type of movement with each one. So then the next one is you're just gonna
do a little swing in front of you from side to side. So try and keep your leg straight. Try and keep your toes pointed. A lot of times people want to turn their toes
in and out. But you really want to keep it pointed forward,
so you're getting those outer muscles working and those inner muscles working. And you're just gonna kind of swing it side
to side in front of you. So again, if you need to hold on to something,
that's fine. Eventually you want to try it without holding
on because then you're gonna work those balancer muscles as well, but to start off, if you
need to, make sure you're holding on to something. So again just maybe starting off with 10,
2 sets of 10. Make sure you're switching sides so you're
getting the different exercises on each side. Really kind of pull up your toes to lock out
all those muscles. That's gonna help work everything as well. And then the last one is just gonna be then
changing the motion where you're gonna go front to back. So I'm just gonna turn sideways so you can
see it a little bit. But again, make sure that you're just moving
at your hip keeping that body nice and upright. It's a little more difficult to keep when
you're going front to back, keeping your upper body upright. People want to kind of swing with it. So make sure you're keeping this upright. Pull your toes up to kind of lock it out. And you're just swinging from front to back. So again, maybe just 10, switch sides, do
10 on that side, maybe 2 sets a couple times a day. So it really just depends on what's causing
that hip tightness. So make sure you're getting checked out and
find out exactly what's going on. So there you have it. Those were my top 7 treatments for hip tightness. If you'd like to help support my channel,
make sure and click on the link up there. And don't forget to subscribe, where? Yeah, down there. And remember, be safe, have fun, and I hope
you feel better soon. .