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Volant
08-11-2014, 11:11 PM
Do any of you incorporate a consistent stretching routine in your workouts/post rides? As I'm getting older, not only do I not recover as fast, but, damn, my hip-flexors and hamstrings are like piano wires! (I also have a desk-job, which doesn't help.) Wondering if anyone has had success with being consistent at stretching and if so, points of reference or routine to emulate?
I've read/heard good and bad about stretching; dynamic vs static, how much, when, etc. But, I'd like to hear from those who found success with it and/or those that tried and didn't.
Thanks in advance!

MattTuck
08-11-2014, 11:25 PM
You get out of stretching what you put into it. According to a massage therapist I saw, she recommended 1 hour of stretching for every 4 hours on the bike.

I do the following 3 times a week. Clearly, it is not a big undertaking, and if I was riding more than a few times a week, I'd be more serious about stretching.

You may also consider active warm ups to help get the muscles a little loose ahead of your ride.

http://www.healthytimesblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/hamstring-stretch.jpg

Repeat that stretch, but have the leg move across the body (ie. for right leg, pull it to the left, it stretches outside of leg)

http://www.osteoarthritisblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/HipFlexorStretch.jpg

A stretch I made up, that is sort of like the hip flexor stretch above, but you drop you torso to be level with the floor, and support it with your hands, and move it around to stretch the groin.


Sit against a wall for 5-10 minutes. Really wedge myself in and just let my hamstrings elongate while I breath.

Hank Scorpio
08-12-2014, 06:32 AM
I have been using a foam roller pretty vigorously this summer. I was already pretty flexible but I do feel that my legs feel better post ride. I have had much less cramping post ride as well.

rnhood
08-12-2014, 06:46 AM
I had a PT prescribe some standard stretches/exercises and I do them every morning before riding or swimming. Takes about 30 minutes ands looses things up nicely - especially the lower back. These are pretty much the typical exercises you can get off the internet and, most of which are in Tom Danielson's book that some people have mentioned here. These exercises and stretching do not heal anything but, they definitely limber things up and are good for the body and joints. Yoga classes are probably another good idea.

SlackMan
08-12-2014, 07:40 AM
My wife has a video by Essentrics titled "Flexibility Workout for Athletes." See preview at link below and there are other short videos by Essentrics on Youtube. The whole stretching workout is way too long to do everyday (at least for me), but it is BY FAR the best stretching workout I have ever done. My goal is to do it once a week....despite the picture on the cover of the DVD ;)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hsVdSWYQzDg

rockdude
08-12-2014, 07:41 AM
all the research keeps pointing away from stretching especially static. Being tight or sore is indicative of a weak, overused or injured muscle. Fix that problem and no tightness, soreness or need to stretching.

Peter P.
08-12-2014, 06:09 PM
I perform a stretching routine before I lift weights. It has helped immeasurably with some mild sciatic pain I had.

I highly suggest you get a reference book on stretching. It's as useful as a bike maintenance manual.

I suggest Bob Anderson's book, Stretching, which has been in print for decades.

teleguy57
08-12-2014, 06:22 PM
Mobility vs stretching is the key for me. Check out Kelly Starrett's book Becoming a Supple Leopard (you can search for him here as he was discussed in several other threads). His site www.mobilitywod.com is a bit hard to navigate, but there are a boatload of free vids that will change how you approach things.

Volant
08-14-2014, 07:57 PM
Thanks, ALL! Some good stuff here and direction for further investigation. Just what I was hoping for! :banana:

RobJ
08-14-2014, 09:05 PM
Similar to Matt's advice. Most chiros and PTs don't recommend static stretching especially to cold muscles. About 10 minutes of dynamic stretching prior to riding is very beneficial. I always stretch after riding especially the hip flexors. As for the stretching, Google Active Isolated Stretching. Some great videos and instruction out there.

DRZRM
08-14-2014, 10:40 PM
Sort of yoga based moves, I like this one and try to incorporate it regularly (after all it is the World's Greatest Stretch (http://q.equinox.com/articles/2013/04/worlds-greatest-stretch))