Stretching can be very dangerous if is not properly performed. If you are trying to rush your stretching capability, you will run the risk of injuring yourself. It is never a good idea to force yourself in doing extensive stretches. It is recommended to progressively work on your stretching a number of weeks before, until you reach your flexibility level that you seek to maintain.
Observing other people do things like bouncing while they stretch is something that you should not do and stay away form. The injuries that you might sustain may potentially prevent you from ever doing the splits so you mind as well play it safe. In addition, your breathing will also play a major role in holding and maximizing your stretches.
When you start doing stretches, do not go right into doing extensive stretches. You should work your stretches bit by bit and extensively with each one going a bit further than your previous one. You need to perform several stretches daily and slowly work yourself into them as you progress. This progression may also be followed by slight discomfort but don’t be discouraged, every goes through it.
You should do a minimum of three reps of twenty to thirty seconds per stretch. It is important that you do more progressive stretching as opposed to doing less before getting to your farthest point. While you are holding your stretch, you should be able to notice the tension of your muscles to slowly decrease. Depending on your flexibility and your stretching technique, you may need to hold on to your stretch as far as forty seconds or more before you start feeling the tension release.
You will ease the tensions by relaxing for a few seconds in between, then go further into your stretch to increase the tension and hold. If you do not feel the tension diminish, loosen your stretch for several seconds than very slowly move on to your next rep. It is never a good idea for to you force yourself into the stretch and feeling pain. Although slight discomfort is acceptable, pain should never be the goal.
Also it is never a good idea to have someone do the stretching for you. Only you can be the judge of the right tension, like I said earlier, discomfort is ok, but pain should be avoided at all costs. Do not fast track or hurry on your stretches. Stretching is all about doing the exercise slowly. You should be relaxed and focused the whole time. If needed, plug in some good relaxing stretch music, this always seems to help as a relaxed soul is a flexible one.
The right stretches will help you attain better results and you will feel more agile than ever before.
One great stretch to perform is the Calf stretch. By stretching all your leg muscles first, your body will get accustomed and will lead to a much easier time while doing the key stretches for the split. This method of stretching involves leaning against the wall with your legs straight or having them bent slightly. This will stretch various parts of your calf muscles. Lower the weight of your body slowly while you start to feel your calves stretch.
Hamstring stretches - Lie flat on your back with both of your feet positioned flat on the ground and your knees bent. Straighten your left leg and slowly hoist it up in the air as far as you can reach. Hold your stretched leg for about ten seconds or so then slowly drop your leg and plant your feet back on the ground. Then do the same for your other leg.