Can you do the splits? How often do you stretch?
Good lord, no!
Definitely can't do the splits, although I've had people tell me I've got pretty good flexibility/mobility, especially for my size. Been slacking on the stretching lately, but I try to do it at least 2-3 times a week if I'm training hard. I find getting some stretching in helps keep my lower back from tightening right the fuck up on me when I'm training really hard.
I have good mobility, but bad flexibility
My hamstrings are pretty flexible/mobile in dynamic movements. RDL's are great for that. I need to stand on plates or take a snatch grip in order to get a full stretch without having the plates hit the ground. Plus I used to sprint all the time and I would stretch my hamstrings pretty often and do those front kicks up over my head.
Other than that I'm decently mobile at the hips and what not for squatting movements. All I do for that is squat/Oly lifts, and I sit in a squat with the bar on my thighs and pry around for a few minutes before all squat/oly sessions. I've gained the mobility to squat simply by squatting. Couldn't do it properly before I discovered weight training.
Thanks for the answers guys.
I've been stretching a bit more from tight hips and lifting feels easier. Except once when I did a bunch of stretching right before squatting and my legs were weak as hell but a couple of hours later they were good. I can't do the splits but I'm close.
I'm tempted to try a yoga class once a week but I hate the idea of yoga...I probably won't because the yoga place near here is thick with the new agey crap.
I can bend over and put my knuckles to the floor with my legs straight.
Working on getting my palms to the floor.
Splits... not so much.
I tend to stretch daily.
Palms flush on the floor with no stretching...
I use to be able to do the splits forwards but my hips aren't square, so it isn't strict, they are twsited. I haven't bothered to stretch as I'm more then flexible enough.
I usually stretch after being away from lifting. Then I stretch before every workout. I focus on hips mostly.
After I find I'm flexible enough, I just stretch when I feel the need to. I do some light dynamic stretching as part of warmup.
Mum is 55 and she does 10reps x 3sets of over head squats everyday. Never done yoga, pilates or any of that jazz...doesn't stretch or do anything competitively. She is naturally supple.
I wish I could convince my mom to do that! I can't even get her to take fish oil. I can't convince anyone to squat actually Everybody seems convinced it will kill them.
I hope to squat as long as I can. And I hope that will maintain my mobility.
I never had to stretch to get as flexible as I am now however, I'm only starting because I'm having hip issues. I did a lot as a kid in gymnastics. Used to be much more flexible then!
Mum takes fish oil now as well. She gets the benefits of OHS and helping her bone density out. My 75yr old grandma was donig some ATG squats as well. Granted not as perfect as my mums form but she is 75!
You will be able to squat ATG at any age. The number one thing is to not stop lifting. If you carry on lifting that will keep you supple.
I use to be able to lie on the floor and arch my back and be able to touch the back of my heads with my toes...those days are gone with the way I have muscle on my back now though. Not complaining as my overall flexibility is very good.
I can squat deep without problems though I could have more flexibility in my lower body. What I have to focus on is my shoulder flexibility.
when i can squat comfortably best thing for my hips is to squat. when i can't squat comfortably then i need other stuff, though...
i do a class. used to be 'bodybalance' but now it is 'centergy' but it is the same thing, really. blend of yoga, taichi, pilates. some mobility stuff, some stretching stuff, some core work, and some playing dead at the end.
my experience with the class varies a lot depending on the instructor.
when i started out i was 3x per week but eventually (once squats felt more comfortable) dropped it back to once per week. after a while i thought i didn't need it really so i quit. couple months after that i injured my back from squatting (not hitting tight bottom position). i've learned... i need to do it. started back and still going 3x a week. getting better each time i go. still making progress.
current instructor was driving me a bit batty to start with. i've learned that there is such a thing as 'power yoga'. i think she comes from that perspective. her transitions are fast and powerful, yeah. she is actually pretty muscular for a yoga chick. athletic. to start with it felt jolty and injury potential... now that i'm getting more mobile i'm enjoying the power and pace a great deal.
sorry about the hippy crap. maybe you can find something without the hippy crap element?? i really do reccomend it... as a mental deload if nothing else. hard to explain.
these movements. set to music. i know, i know, but i'm one of these people for whom music is the most powerful motivator of all...
Flexibility is a touchy subject to me. Ive never been that flexible, and playing soccer for the past 20 years of my life really hasnt helped.
debraD: I used to think yoga would be a waste of time. I tried it for the first time about 3 months ago and I havent looked back. I try to do it 2-3 times a week. I actually do Bikram yoga, which I like because its the same thing everytime and its easy to follow. I do find the heat is a bit excessive and I have to becareful it doesnt intefere with the recovery of my other training. I used to look down at the spiritual hockey pockey aswell, but I am now more more accepting of it all and Im actually interested in exploring that side of yoga a bit more. Anyhting that promotes inner peace with yourself cannot be a bad thing.
I was actually thinking of doing goodmornings with an emphasis on the stretched part every day to try and improve my hamstring flexibility. Anyone have any opinion on doing this?
I said in my first post that RDL's have helped my hamstring flexibility tremendously.
i guess if hamstring flexibility is all you need then sure.
the thing i love about doing the classes is that i discover that i have issues that i didn't know i had (e.g., i think i have tight hamstrings but really it turns out to be more complicated issue of pelvis being out of alignment).