Sunday, December 09, 2007

Progressive Flexibility.


While I have realized that the combination of Rifga stretches and Z drills is better than either of them alone, I still have way more lower body tension than I would like. When one major joint only bends half the required amount this is going to be the case but the more open that leg/knee is the less total tension I retain and the better everything feels.

I have known that I have to "get on the floor" and do my prone cobras and down dogs and straddle and pike stretches to keep the hammies and calves open.I also use the sumo and stick squats to open up the hips and my knees but then it came to me that I haven't done with the stretching what I did with the kbs and the Z drills; take it to the next level by taking things to the standing position and treating my stretching and stance work progressively as I do my kb and CB training.

I have been getting on the floor but I havent been really paying attention to how deep my stretches are or if they have been really progressing. I have been just been waiting out the tension; which is good, but it could be much better.Maybe it is time to get my splits back.

And I have to start treating the standing squat and lunge positions as just primal pattern work with deeper stances held with less tension.The same respect for the positions as I would have for the move if I could practice them loaded.
The basic 'karate' stance positions really stretch out the calves feet and opposite side hip flexor and rectus femoris.it also shows me when my shoulders and hips are squared up, or not.
The rectus can really mess with the knee and the back if its tight. It's a knee extensor and hip flexor so it's gotta have it's full length; the standing karate type lunge stretch gets it all. Especially if I work it deep.But I have to work them more consistently and progressively.Also the wide stance deep horse stance. Just cause I can't squat heavy anymore doesnt mean I shouldn't work the position where it's weak; in its flexibility.Especially with the knee forward. That will open up the ankle more as well.

The only thing harder than figuring out what to do is really remembering to do it consistently.

2 comments:

Franz Snideman said...

Consistency truly is the key to any long term progress, right? I think there are some non-negotiables out there in training, and keeping your soft tissues healthy is KING.

I like your concept of having flexibility/mobility goals rather than just "waiting out tension." Trial and error seems to be a great part of figuring out the body riddle!

Mark Reifkind said...

thanks franz. It just dawned on me that while I could wait out the tension and get some decent soft tissue release I haven't really been pushing at all for substantial progress in ROM. especially for the left ankle and knee.the standing stretches are great too as they can be done anywhere and anytime.