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Breathe and Relax and Let the Flexibility Flow

Relaxing is the easiest way to get further with your stretches and flexibility.

How so? Isn’t stretching supposed to be painful?

That’s the interesting part. When you tense up it IS painful. When you let go and relax it isn’t so much.

Note how Pawel and Sakia below are both adopting a relaxed stance below.



Try this. Go into a stretch of your choice: touch your toes, hold a leg behind you, whatever. Then as you start the stretch, BREATHE.

Breathing is proven to be an easy way to get your body to relax.

Breathe long, slow, deep breaths. In for four seconds. Out for four. Breathe as deep as you can, then try to breathe a bit more.

Emphasise the out breath and use this time to move deeper into your stretch. Think of expelling all the stiffness and inhaling new flexibility.


Facial expression also helps. Your body tends to follow what the rest of it does, so relax your face as much as you can. Look, Pavel is even smiling!


The more you breathe and get used to it, the more you are able to focus on the muscles and willingly get them to relax. There are times when this is particularly useful, such as the stretch below:


For any stretch where you are folded over breathing becomes harder, so some level of thought into relaxing the muscles is essential.

Take Away

Over the next week, monitor yourself and pay attention to when you feel really relaxed. Maybe you’re having a massage, a hot shower, a sauna.

Pay attention to how your body feels and go back to this memory each time you stretch. This becomes your ‘anchor’ and before you know it, your body relaxes without effort and then the flexibility starts to flow.

Programming objectives: July /August/ Sept 2017


All CrossFit London classes are designed to improve you, whether you are pushing the boundaries of your aerobic capacity in our Metcon classes, getting your first back flick in our gymnastic classes, deadlifting that unimaginable weight in powerlifting or finally dealing with that dodgy shoulder (whatever) in our mobility sessions; training with us will deliver you results.

We do however have a very focused Level 2 classes that has a series of block periodized objectives as well as GPP and the CrossFit Games Open targets.

Our global objectives are very much geared towards the CrossFit Open. This is an annual event that our clients love. It’s where we benchmark our members against other Crossfitters in the world. From previous experience, we pretty much know we want strong legs, strong arms, and a great core as well as skill in kipping, double unders, being upside down,  the Olympic lifts and an amazing metabolic engine. You’ll notice the first 30 minutes of each Level 2 class devotes itself to most of those objectives.

We have a relentless love for nudging your front squat, deadlift and back squat along. We dream of you having a better overhead position. We lust after you having a better clean and snatch. We are weird like that. We want you to double-under, pistol, handstand walk/push up. We know arm strength will give you the muscle up.

Our colleagues in the worldwide training community tell us to prioritize your l-leg training. You will get sick of 1-legged RDLs pistols and Bulgarian splits, but one day you will thank us for having the courage to relentlessly set these moves.

Todays, isn’t that day.

However, we know that CrossFit gives us benchmark workouts, Fran, Elizabeth, Fight Gone Bad, CrossFit Total, to mention a few. We use these to structure our monthly training and our block objectives

In our forthcoming “block”, the objectives are an improved performance in:

1) Elizabeth (21-15-9 Squat cleans, dips) scheduled 13/7

2) CrossFit Total  1 rep max back squat, press, deadlift) scheduled 25/7

3) 30 kneeling muscle up for time (more of a sub-target, but kipping muscle ups for the team, or pull up /dip subs if need be. 2/8

4) Fight Gone Bad: 10/8

5) Cindy: 28/8

6) 30 power snatches for time: 16/9

7)  100 burpees for time: 30/9

These will guide, but not be the sole determiner, of the second 30 minutes of our Level 2 classes (we still need to weave GPP and the Open criterias in)

You’ll notice an escalating abdominal section at the end of most workout sessions slowly creeping in. We all need good looking abs. It helps with career prospects.

However, there is an underpinning objective: and that’s to make you effective, independent, skilled, and knowledgeable trainees. Which means we will support your in-class work with blog posts, video’s and do at home routines.

It’s going to be an exciting year  and as trainers, we look forward to seeing your success. All you have to do is to get to class,  read the blog ( I actually mean, “do your home work”) and have an inquisitive mind.



WOD 25 June 2017


Handstand push-ups.

Strength (1):

Seated DB press.


Strength (2):

Weighted dips.




10x toes-to-bar.

15x goblet lunges.

20x alternating KB snatch.

25x KB swings.


Looking to start with CrossFit London UK in Bethnal Green?

Find out more about our beginners programme here and you can book our Level 1 classes online here, or here for those with prior CrossFit experience.

If you have any other questions then you should be able to find the answers on the website but if you’re still stuck you can email me here.