Friday, June 25, 2010

How to get your splits down faster

I can't get my splits down, and it's hurting my gymnastics. What can I do?

The simple answer is... stretch! Stretch at gymnastics, stretch at home, stretch at your friend's house... wherever. One trick I used to use is called contractions. No, not the kind you have when you're in labor, but I suppose the word is used because it is based on a similar concept. Contractions work like this: Go into your splits as far as you can, even if that means you're a foot off the ground. Now squeeze your leg muscles as hard as you can, so it's almost as if you can hold yourself off the ground not with your hands, but with your legs. Hold this longer than you think you can. 30 seconds, maybe. Then relax your muscles and slide a little bit further into your splits. If you've done it correctly, you'll find that it seems much easier now to split further than you could before. Do this every day until you feel confident with your splits, just be careful not to overdo it. Pulled muscles = bad, successful splits = good.

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