1. Pick 5-10 pose goals
Write down your goals in your goal section to refer back to.
Try to complete the core goals first before trying more advanced poses.
Poses are your goals, the shapes and lines that you want to achieve. Static stretches are pose preps, poses are basically more intense static stretches. Accordingly you can list static stretches as your goals.
Focus on these core goals first, than you can work on some of the more advanced poses.
- right spilt
- left split
- middle split – knees facing forward
- straddle split – knees facing upward
- forearm stands
- handstands – hollow body
- forward bend – flat back
2. Hold each Pose
4 sets of 30 seconds, about 10 deep breaths.
3. Apply a Technique
Alongside static stretches are techniques to help increase the effectiveness of a stretch. You may have heard of isometrics, PNF, passive, and/or resistance training, these are all helpful techniques to learn and apply. See more below.
To keep it simple here is what I do in a static stretch. Breath integrated with muscle contraction and relaxation.
- Once proper form is achieved begin; Inhale and contract all of your muscles.
- Exhale, relax muscles, and gently sink into the stretch.
- Inhale, slightly come back out of the stretch, straighten or elongate necessary muscles and contract.
- Exhale, relax muscles and gently sink into the stretch.
- Repeat until you reach 10.
The main focus is to breath deep; the next major focus is form. No matter how flexible or inflexible you are it is important to work on form, which normally consists of elongating every limb, squaring hips, or slightly turning, twisting arms, and legs; all depending on the stretch.
When you achieve good form, squeezing or contracting all the muscles will build muscle memory, so when you are up in the air without gravity’s assistance you will remember what good form feels like and which muscles need to be activated.
If you study the shapes you’re imitating and then watch the shapes you are making, you will start to see the adjustments you need to make, this is also the invaluable part of having a coach or instructor.
Most of the static stretches are tutorials that you can click through to.