Saturday, February 25, 2012

Hip girdle stretches

I promised in my Flexibility vs. Mobility post that I would be sharing some stretching sequences for the hips. It's taken a while, but it's finally here.
The intention is that with this group of stretches, you should be able to address all the major movers of the hips - particularly ones you are likely to use in your workouts.  So, pick whatever feels most restricted to you, and focus on that.  BUT, don't ignore the rest - we must aim for balance.
If you have watched Mario's Hip Mobility Sequence, you will recognize some of these.  The difference is that we ARE going for flexibility when we are using these postures for a stretch, so that means hanging out in them for 30 seconds, and even repeating if you can manage the time to spend on your one-and-only, irreplaceable body.
Most of these stretches will address multiple muscles, but I've decided to refer to them pretty much by their primarily targeted muscles.
Below is a list of the stretches, the times they appear in the video and what movements they are likely to be good recovery from:
0:00 - Psoas & hip flexors - recovery from any time your hips are in flexion (including sitting).
1:04 - Adductors and hamstrings - recovery from squats, sled pulls, or anything that calls for driving with the legs.
1:56 - External rotators / glutes  IT band - recovery from every and anything (these muscles serve so many purposes in different situations that it's pointless to narrow it down too much).
3:05 - Rotators / adductors - recovery from squats & forceful driving with the legs
4:39, 5:35 & 6:28 - Quads 1, 2 & 3 (different options for different depths of stretch) - Squats, wall balls, running, sitting at your desk
7:43 - Obliques / Lower lumbar muscles - deadlifts, running, weighted squats.

Friday, February 17, 2012

The post that isn't

This is a post to let you know that there won't be a post this week.  I'm too busy not stretching enough, not working out enough, and not minding my caloric intake enough while in Germany.  Oh boy, its delicious!  But that's beside the point. I will get us back on track with a post next Friday, then back to alternating Fridays.

Happy stretching, hydrating and icing!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Myofascial release and (sports) injuries

The other day, I had a wonderful session with a client who has chronic pain which flares up sometimes and stems from an auto accident she suffered many years ago.  At the time she came to see me, there was acute pain near the spine, so I was a little hesitant to work directly on the area with any forceful deep tissue-type work.  Consequently, our session turned into nearly 90 minutes of almost solely myofascial release work.  We had tremendous results. Inspiring results.

This hugely productive session, was exciting for me (and my client, too, I think), and it got me thinking: what role can myofascial release have in injury recovery?  I did a little searching, and found something that surprised me just a tad: most of the articles that popped up in the top of the search results had to do with sports injuries and myofascial release.  Is the sports medicine scene ahead of the curve here, and
why hasn't the orthopedic medicine world caught on?  I don't have the answer to those questions, but I'll bet that what works for the major athletes will begin to be adopted by the general public.  I'd like to help that happen, and here's just some of the how and why myofascial release can benefit injury recovery...