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Stretching vs Foam Rolling or Both for PL?


#1

Hey guys, just saw this article by Dean Somerset
https://www.T-Nation.com/training/stretching-doesnt-work

Trying to open up my hips for Sumo deadlift, should I foam roll or stretch? Thx


#2

Dean is a very smart man.

Static stretching as outlined in his article doesn’t really “fix” anything. Mobility work along with soft tissue work of key areas is what fixes you up.

That said Jim Wendler says something along the lines of “if stretching makes you feel/perform better then stretch”.

To open your hips you likely need mobility/soft tissue work. If stretching personally helps you then do it after a training session and not before if you can help it.

In short- do what ever works for you.


#3

While mobility is certainly important I think it is drastically overstated, you only need to be mobile enough to squat to depth, get in a good deadlift setup and bench. I pull sumo and might do mobility stuff just the night before I deadlift, I do more stabilization and activation to get me ready to lift. Warming up properly, making sure my muscles are firing correctly etc will do a lot more for your mobility.


#4

[quote]cparker wrote:
While mobility is certainly important I think it is drastically overstated, you only need to be mobile enough to squat to depth, get in a good deadlift setup and bench. I pull sumo and might do mobility stuff just the night before I deadlift, I do more stabilization and activation to get me ready to lift. Warming up properly, making sure my muscles are firing correctly etc will do a lot more for your mobility.[/quote]

This too. Too much mobility is a bad thing.


#5

Thanks a lot guys, I actually found that foam rolling feels better for my mobility and recovery (actually prefer a lacrosse ball and a soft ball).


#6

I used static stretches (hold for about 5 sec) in the past and recently switched to more dynamic stretches. The only noticeable difference is that I need to warm up longer with lighter weights when doing static stretches and less with dynamic stretches. I probably spend the same amount of total time warming up and there isn’t any difference in performance so I believe it’s just preference. It might be different for mobility but I’ve always improved mobility by doing the specific movement often and increasing mobility for that movement over time.

For recovery my protocol was to ice my lower back after every heavy back session, foam roll and use a theracane every night. I did this every night for the past few years because I believed it helped with recovery. However, in the past 5 months I haven’t done any of this and my recovery is fine even with increased volume. My take on it now is that it makes sense to do it if you know you’re going to be sore for more than a day or two, or if you just have time to kill. I was sore for a long time in the past because I did good morning squats and my technique for all the lifts looked a lot shittier. The recovery protocol was masking the real problem.