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PostPosted: Sun Mar 31, 2013 2:47 pm 
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[quote="robertscott"]at the risk of just sounding like a contrarian, I have to say that stretching never did a damn thing for me.

Sign Me Up

Overall, I view it to some extent as "foo-foo" girly stuff.

I never could get into it.

What I found was to "package" it in with my exercises.

It like hiding your pets medicine in a treat.

Gymnast and Olympic Lifters

Gymnast are the most flexible group of athlets. Olympic Lifters are the second or third most flexible group.

The majority of their flexibility comes form execises and movements the involve flexibility.

Olympic Snatch

This movement mandates you have flexibility, everywhere. This allows some of those Olympic Lifter freaks to sit in a low squat position with 300 lbs extended over head.

The Snatch is a flexibility/balancing movement.

It NOT The Back

Year ago, my lower back hurt like hell.

In training my lower back, I began using Good Mornings. The Good Mornings stretch the hell out of my hamstrings.

This ended my back pain.

What I learned was that my hamstrings were so tight they basically pulled on my lower back creating pain in my back.

Car Steering Wheel Example

Years ago, I took my car into the mechanic. I told him something was wrong with the steering wheel, it shook in my hands when driving it.

The mechanic told me, "You tires are out of alinment." That created the steering wheel problem.

Full Range Movements

Full range movements allow muscle groups to be stretched.

That means if you preform full range movements, you pretty much end up with the same results.

Kenny Croxdale

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 01, 2013 11:22 am 
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Jungledoc wrote:
... The summary, though, is that if you are doing something that is making you stiff and sore, the best treatment is to stop doing that...


So much for max efforts deadlifts.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2013 12:27 am 
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Yeah, so if you were doing max effort deads every day, and you were getting worse, I'd tell you to make SOME sort of change.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2013 7:30 am 
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Deific Wizard of Sagacity
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Stretching is just one small piece of a pretty big puzzle.

There's lots of different ways to stretch, and lots of different reasons for stretching, so a black and white answer is a tough one. For example you can stretch purely for therapeutic reasons. The stretching in this case isn't supposed to make much of a difference to anything other than how you feel. It can really help you relax.

A lot of people do stretch to try and increase flexibility. However, quite often they stretch muscles which aren't restricting them in the first place, and even more often they aren't stretching in a way that will make much difference to anything, for example, a few 30 second stretches here and there isn't going to make a difference to any "short" muscle. But this is the way most who stretch for this purpose will do it.

Athletes who require extreme flexibily, like gymnasts or ballet dancers, use specialised and frankly, brutal techniques to achieve this. Unless you want to be a gymnast or Ballet Dancer, they are a poor example to follow. I would also challenge you to find an active gymnast or Ballet Dancer who is NOT in some kind of pain. It's practically the norm (athletes are almost always in some kind of pain....).

Also, there's no research to support stretching/improved flexibility to reduce injury. However, there's some research to the contrary. For example, the more ROM (Range of Motion) you have in your lower back, the more at risk you are of injury. Most yoga instructors love to hear this -note sarcasm-.

You need mobility in the right places, and stability in the right places. When you lose stability somewhere, a mobile segment needs to stiffen to compensate and protect you (lose stability in the lower back and your hips will stiffen, for example). Trying to increase range of motion without also improving stability over that motion can make you more vulnerable to injury at worse, and do nothing at best.

The best way to avoid injury is train smart, using a good balanced program, striving for good technique and having a little patience. I say patience because people tend to throw caution to the wind for the sake of numbers. Slow and steady progress wins the race.

I would second looking into a good basic dynamic warm up. This is basically just "moving around". It's still technically stretching if you're pushing for more Range of Motion plus, since you are "moving" and need good form/technique, you are also forced to express stability/control over that range of motion. So you kill the "flexibility" and "stability" birds with one stone.

Where static stretching becomes very useful, as an example, is if some of the dynamic stretches you are trying to do are very stubborn and not improving much. Lets say, a bodyweight squat. You can throw some static hip flexor stretches in before the dynamic ones (b/w squats) to "open you up" then try and move through that range of motion with a bodyweight squat.

The problem with a static stretch in itself is you get this new Range of Motion and when you "cool down" it just goes back to normal. This doesn't make static stretching bad, it's just being misused. You need to get the motion then actualy use it.

A Dynamic warm up is the simplest place to start. When you are used to this I would add some foam rolling in before the warm up. When you are used to this, you will probably know more than any of us what "static" stretches you need to add in to help things a long. Even if you don't, it'll be much easier for us to help because we will know specifically what you are trying to achieve.

KPj

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2013 8:06 am 
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Jungledoc wrote:
Yeah, so if you were doing max effort deads every day, and you were getting worse, I'd tell you to make SOME sort of change.


I should have put in a smilie, I was kidding.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 12:39 pm 
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I'm not a huge fan of static stretching as it's typically performed. If you want to improve useful ROM moving the body through a movement pattern under an appropriate load will likely be more effective than trying to stretch a muscle that you perceive to be "tight."

There's not a lot of good research on stretching that can be applied in an overly useful manner, which is probably why there are so many approaches and gurus when it comes to attempting to improve or restore range of motion. For my money, rather than try and decide what degree of "flexibility" is important, I just focus on an individuals ability to perform movement patterns correctly. Excepting the sports that require additional flexibility, if an individual can perform posturally correct squats, deadlifts, horizontal and vertical presses and pulls, they should possess all the flexibility they "need." This is where a simple scoring system like the FMS comes into play; if you can pass the FMS, a dynamic warm up, intelligent work set progression and appropriate lifting should be enough. If not, PNF stretching and maybe some static positions — with the focus on opening movement, not stretching muscles — may be required.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 2:00 pm 
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Funny thing happened today in relation to these things.

I did FMS assesment to a client, and he passed every test clearly, but only could do a quarter squat or so with the overhead squat test. Well, he said he gets better ROM with small plates under heels, and that was accurate. He got past parallel. BUT, then I removed the plates, and gave him a 5kg weigth to hold on straigth arms in front of him. Well what do you know, he got to full depth.

What I'm saying is that the complexes behind mobility and stability aren't clear and simple. There usually is much more than just stretching can solve.

PS: I never static stretch. I only do dynamic stretches as a warm-up, and sometimes a little SMR. And I can do a split.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 2:55 pm 
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Dub wrote:
I did FMS assesment to a client, and he passed every test clearly, but only could do a quarter squat or so with the overhead squat test. Well, he said he gets better ROM with small plates under heels, and that was accurate. He got past parallel. BUT, then I removed the plates, and gave him a 5kg weigth to hold on straigth arms in front of him. Well what do you know, he got to full depth.


increased core activation, Waterbury's written loads about it. Where've you been?

it's why people can usually hit a better depth front squatting


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 04, 2013 9:09 am 
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On FMS, I get loads of 1's for the deep squat and after the screen, I always try and coach the squat because it makes the first actual training session easier. With women I pretty much always get them from a 1 to a 2 with some coaching*. Men can be tricky because the upper body is normally locked up, too, but I can almost always get someone to hit depth.

*In the avoidance of doubt, the ability to figure stuff out is part of what is being screened, which is why you don't coach them first and just give them some instructions.

Life is much, much simpler if you think "movement" not "muscles". Especially when it comes to movement. Seems painfully obvious when I type that out! However it's very easy to overcomplicate (and i'm one of the worse for over complicating)

KPj

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