Tagged as: PNF

You too can get the splits… by starting where you are

Side splits or box splits are something everyone wants, but seem impossible to get. But not anymore.

When looking at a far off goal it’s easy to get disheartened. We keep telling ourselves, I don’t have it, why don’t I have it, this sucks etc. I should have the splits by now!

The first step is to ask yourself, what level am I at now? And accept it, be OK with it. If you start where you are you can progress smoothly, safely. Trying to jump in at a level that you think you SHOULD be leads to pain, poor technique, bad habits and worse case injury. Makes sense?

OK, back to the box splits. So you’ve worked out your level. Now it comes to choosing the right progression.

 

20170610_142715

The Butterfly

Sit down with your legs loose in front, then pull your feet in, soles touching, knees out and as low to the floor as possible. All of these progressions employ the ‘squeeze release’ method – come along to a flexibility class to find out exactly what this is.

Your partner stands behind and applies pressure on the knees using the squeeze-release timing. By standing as above your partner is able to use bodyweight to apply more intensity with less effort. Because in flexibility we like to be lazy.

 

20170610_142707

 

The Butterfly

We’ve got a little menagerie going on here. If your knees are touching the floor in the butterfly, it’s time to move onto the next progression. The them for this one is 90 degrees. Kneel on your hands and knees with a 90 degree angle at your knees, hips, shoulders and elbows. Then start to move your knees apart, keeping alignment. Alignment is key in flexibility for reduced injury, pain and to save years correcting bad habits. Sounds good?

Your partner applies pressure at the lower back or top of the thighs in the squeeze release method. Your goal will be squeezing your knees against the floor while they keep you pinned down.

 

20170610_142134

Butterfly – Blocks

Increase intensity further on blocks. Same pointers apply as above.

 

20170610_143240

Inverted Box Split

Final progression. Sit up close to the wall so you are literally sitting on the wall and your legs go up vertical, back on the floor. Then open your legs out in a scissor motion, knees locked. Stay loose and relaxed. Your partner applies pressure either to the calves or thighs – if you get pain in the knees then thighs are better. Go easy with this one and speak up if your partner is going too far as it’s a very intense stretch. Make sure you come out of the stretch slow as well or you will be walking like John Wayne (which may happen anyway – hey, he was kind of cool.)

20170610_143236

Pretty much anyone can get a box split if they WANT it bad enough – yes you too. It’s all about doing the right things consistently.

If any of the above sounds confusing, book into a flexibility class and I’ll be happy to help out.

Felix

Power Yoga and Mobility class:

photo6copy

Yoga at Crossfit London, was always going to be different. More effective, more challenging, better taught.

Sui , our tutor, sequences classes by bringing together the benefits of mindful movement meditation and flow of Yoga and Animal Flow, combining this with latest scientific understanding of  ‘anatomy trains’ meridians and fascia, getting inspiration from body-weight, calisthenics training, and Kelly Starrett’s Crossfit Mobility Certification training.

The class starts with dynamic energetic flows, linking movement with breath.  Focus is on sequences to improve mobility in shoulders and hips, and sequences to build core strength.  Hand balancing is sometimes included to enhance the playful challenge, always optional!   A variety of techniques will be used to enhance functional flexibility and mobility training, including mobility tools (eg balls, rollers or straps), proprioceptive neural facilitation (PNF) techniques and partner work. The class will close with a guided body-scan relaxation based on mindfulness techniques.  This is a fun friendly class.  All levels are welcomed!

This class links so many aspects of what we do at Crossfit London together: Crossfit, Olympic weightlifting, Power lifting,  Gymnastics, Tumbling, Met-Con, even rowing  are all linked by mobility.

Our class combines the old, with cutting edge methodologies. An appropriate focus on meditation is exactly what many of our busy, successful  clients need.

Crossfit London Yoga classes are reality checked. At least half of our  class  members are  athletes who back flip,  lift heavy weight and do amazing workouts,  They need to learn genuine skills. They need to boost their performance. Mobility for them isn’t an option, its a fundamental need. They go to this class, because it delivers that. Even if you work in an office, these sessions will help you

Join them. Book here  (navigate to sunday!!)

These classes link in with our team of amazing therapists. Kate Pankhurst of Magic Thumb , supported by Andrew Stemler . They fix  many of our athletes with an impressive array of methodologies from the humble thumb, Rock Tape,  Medical Dry needing, trigger points,myofascial release, M.E.T and sometimes a rewire of how you move and think about your pain.