Friday, November 5, 2010

Post-WOD stretch

     A hearty howdy to everyone out there, graciously reading these rambles. Today, we're going to sit and have a little talk about stretching... specifically, the rarely performed post-WOD stretching.

Cats have great range of motion

     So maybe we're not flexible as the cat above (I know I'm not). But if we are ever going to have a chance to be as nimble as a feline, we're going to have to stretch. I think that we're fairly good to you all about a good pre-WOD warm up and stretch. It's important that we take the time to prepare our bodies for the rigors of CrossFit.

     Now, we all know to get stronger we have to practice our lifts. In the same thought process, to become more flexible we will need to stretch. As well as following this blog, you may be following the Mobility WOD by Kelly Starrett (or K-Star as he is also known). Kudos to all that do. But let's try to stay on topic. Why do we need to stretch after destroying ourselves during the WOD. Well, that's going to be the best time to stretch! Our bodies have become warm, relaxed, and able to work through a greater ROM (range-of-motion) than when we started.

The foam roller is your friend

     Usually, before the WOD we will focus on dynamic stretching. Dynamic stretching means that we are stretching through movements, such as a walking lunges, arm circles, and squats. Using this type of stretching we are achieving the ROM that may be needed during the WOD and warming our body. So it makes a too much sense that we use this prior to our workout. Again, let's try to stay on topic...

     After the WOD we still need to stretch. However, the dynamic stretch may not be what we need. Our body temperature is already raised, so  we're looking for more of a "cool-down" exercise... say hello to Static Stretching! Static stretching is exactly what it sounds like, we are holding certain position to stretch our muscles. This type of stretching is slow and constant, and held for 20-30 seconds at a time. Our friend, the Samson Stretch, is a good example of a static stretch. So after we've made our sweat angel on the floor, it might be a good idea to get up and use some of these:

  • Sampson Stretch (as stated above)
  • Scorpion stretch (looks funky, but it's all good)
  • Grion stretch (the butterfly)
  • Arm-across-chest
  • Triceps stretch
  • Hamstring stretch (sit on the floor and reach for the toes)
  • Foam Roller (see the earlier Foam Roller post)

See... you look like a scorpion!

     So, how often should you be doing this? In the perfect world we should do this after every WOD. We should, at the very least, devote 10 minutes a day to stretching (MWOD takes 10 minutes *hint hint*). Think about it, this takes 10 minutes... you still have 1,430 minutes left of your day!

Crossfit from Darren Doane on Vimeo.

3,2,1 Stretch!

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