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Stretching & Limits

For the past several years, I’ve remained frustrated over how little I’ve been able to stretch my legs.   A long time ago, maybe around 2009, I decided I wanted to get my splits.  For years, I simply just sat down and attemtpted to push my stretch to a new position, and get there.   Five years later …. I had nothing to show for it.

I thought I was making progress, I was becoming more active. I joined a beginner pole dance class.  Between 30 consecutive days of that, plus some home practice, I felt like I was getting better and stronger…. but not where I was looking for.  My pole work suffered from an inability to keep my legs straight when in the air, kick/foot height and spread was also poor.  I just wasn’t stretching enough.

For a while, I became uninterested, frustrated, and really just didn’t want to bother pursuing it. Years went by and I didn’t even think about it anymore.  Then 2016 rolled in.  I was getting seriously involved in figure skating, though only about 2 months into it.  It didn’t take a college degree to realize that where I suffered in one area would come back.  It was even the same problems, if I wanted to be technical.  Leg back, straight, certain heights.  Open hips, good range of motion and the ability to hold it.  I just kind of stared in acknowledgement.  I could not pursue anything I wanted with out getting there, but I didn’t have to be there today.

So for most of 2016, I would literally just go out onto the ice and skate my hardest.  At such a low level, I could even do so comfortably in jeans.  Then, 2017 came in.  I found that I was in a spot where I couldn’t just go out and skate anymore. I had to do a few laps at a moderate pace, sit down and stretch out my legs.  After doing so, I always felt more stable, more powerful, and more agile.  Otherwise, I was stiff and closed.  It wasn’t until late April that I started to realize that when I stretched, I had to do more than just push myself into it. I had to push my position into a place that was new. I was finally making progress.

This is super exciting.  It looks like the whole reason for my lack of improvement was because I wasn’t warmed up correctly.   Sure, I stretched after I moved around in my day, or before bed.  This was different, my body was active, heart rate up. I even had a sense of relief in my muscles from the stretch.  So, I’m sticking with this routine for a while.  My coach says that if I’m not doing this 4 times a week, its “worthless”, so I’m trying to keep that in mind yet let my body have time to heal up.

 

 

About Ashley Young

I'm a North Carolina transplanted girl reaching my 30's. A few years ago, I procured my first DSM that would eventually mature many of my skills. This website is dedicated to the stories, adventures, and lessons that the car has brought to me over the years.

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