So you're as stiff as a board, can't touch your shins let alone your toes! Hamstrings are super tight and painful? The splits can only ever be a dream? Yep, that was me 8 years ago! ha ha.
I would never ever of even contemplated I could do the splits before, like I would of laughed if you told me where I would be today. Flexibility is a tough one, you have to have the right coaching and be consistent with stretching. There are SO many different ways out there that you can get flexible, such as Yoga, Pilates, Pole Dancing, Gymnastics...
The thing with stretching is, you have to be dedicated. It has to be something you stay consistent with to see results. I LOVE stretching, its not painful (when done properly), it doesn't make you sweat. You can stretch in front of the tv or on your computer! It can be incorporated into your daily routine.
If you work out at the gym or go running, you are probably extra tight in the hamstrings etc, but this is still something you CAN do with the right coaching!
I have a horse and go riding most days, which makes my hip flexor muscles super duper tight, so when it comes to stretching it hurts and feels impossible, but once you warm up safely and get stretching, everything becomes easier and you gradually progress.
Foam rollers are amazing at working out tight spots in your muscles! These can help with stretching also. Or if you are feeling brave, a tennis ball! Roll it onto the area using the floor or the wall! Such a good pain though! ;)
I will attach a photo below of the day I first got my splits! This was about a year after I started training with my awesome friend Laurie, who is incredible at Pole, and Personal training! She helped me figure out the best stretches for me and boom! I got my splits and I was SO happy.
Tadaaaaa - 2016 ;D
Fast forward to 2017! I over stretched myself, I didn't warm up properly and went into an 'over split' which I could usually do, however due to being cold and my muscles tight, I tore my hamstring! :( The initial pain wasn't too bad, but the days following were sooooo sore. I was so angry and upset that this had happened, I was panicking my flexibility would be gone. Sure enough, it was.
I went to multiple physio's, osteopaths etc who all tried a different approach to helping me with no luck. In the end I realised I just had to figure out some rehab exercises that work for me. Extremely gentle strengthening exercises and stretches slowly but surely helped me rebuild.
Even to this day on a cold day, I can feel the ache. However once I am warm and moving, it feels about 90 percent! It happens to all of us unfortunately :( but life is short, you have to deal with today and stay positive!
You have to find the right coach, the right exercises for you and you WILL get where you want to be. Do not push yourself, do not over stretch, stay patient and you will be spreadying the floor in no time! ha ha.
Love, Abbie xxxx