Flexibility for Runners (December 1st, 2011)

On Thursday, December 1st, ‘Flexibility for Runners’ was presented for the Denman Running Room’s Half-Marathon clinic.  During this info session, presented by StayFitAnywhere’s Advanced Health & Fitness Specialist, Andrew Burchell, the reasons and guidelines for stretching were discussed, followed by demos of great pre-run & post-run stretches.  Here is a quick review of what was covered during the info session:

WHY STRETCH?

  • Muscle is living tissue that, when not used, becomes short and stiff, and progressively declines in function.

ACSM’S POSITION ON THE BENEFITS OF GOOD FLEXIBILITY:

  • Decreases muscle tension
  • Increases muscle relaxation
  • Improves coordination through greater ease of movement
  • Increases range of motion
  • Injury prevention
  • Improvement + Development of body awareness
  • Increases circulation + air exchange
  • Decreases muscle viscosity causing contractions to be easier & smoother
  • Decreases soreness associated with other exercise (like running)

ACSM GUIDELINES FOR FLEXIBILITY TRAINING:

  • Minimal:  2-3 days a week
  • IDEAL:  5-7 days a week
  • Stretch to tightness at the end of the range of motion but not pain
  • Hold each stretch for 15-30 seconds
  • 2-4x/stretch
  • Static stretch all major muscle groups

DYNAMIC STRETCHING (PRE-RUN):

  • Quad to Hamstring stretch (quick quad stretch to front leg swing)
  • Trunk twisting (rotate your torso without moving your hips)
  • Alternating Calf Stretching
  • Reverse Shoulder Rolls

STATIC STRETCHING (POST-RUN):

  • Abductors (Figure 4 leg position)
  • Traps (Handcuff stretch or ‘Leg Grab’)
  • Calfs (use a curb)
  • Hamstrings (straight leg & pull bum back)
  • Hip Flexors (lunge position + posterior pelvic tilt)

Happy running!  And don’t forget to download your free copy of “The 12 Keys to Fat Loss”

Andrew Burchell, Dipl.Ex.Sci

Advanced Health & Fitness Specialist

andrew.burchell@stayfitanywhere.com

Follow us on Twitter