SXS Fitness Tip #1: Make the time to stretch
As provided by partner SXS Fitness, Stefan Overgaard…
Hamstring Flexibility. It’s no secret that being flexible is an important component for anyone involved in sports BUT it generally it takes a back seat to other ‘more exciting’ areas of training such as strength and conditioning, cardio work, speed/agility and plyos, etc., etc. It’s one of those areas that most people know they must improve but don’t prioritize it enough to ever allow themselves to realize any significant gains (tell an athlete they need to get stronger and you’ll find them in the gym working on their squats, tell them they need to be more flexible and all of a sudden they have homework to catch up on). MAKE THE TIME to increase your flexibility and mobility – you can even do it while watching TV or catching up on all that home work.
Hamstring flexibility is generally considered the ‘bench mark’ to determine level of flexibility. We can debate whether it’s a true overall bench mark or even the most important determinant of flexibility. EITHER WAY there are few experts that will tell you that having flexible hamstrings are not an important part of both athletic performance and helping to prevent a number of chronic injuries including lower back pains. Here are a few examples of great hamstring stretches that you can do anywhere which will help increase hamstring flexibility. They are static stretches we’d recommend holding for 30 seconds or more. Make sure you are taking deep breaths and feeling a ‘strong BUT comfortable’ stretching of the muscles (don’t force the stretch to the point of discomfort). Do any of these stretches either after a workout, or any time of day, just not before, or during a workout as you will relax and disengage the muscles which is counter productive to the workout.