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Static and Dynamic stretches

Static and Dynamic stretches

In our previous article we discussed the importance of stretching. However, there were few benefits which didn’t complement  each other. The reason is different types of stretching techniques. Stretching in a specific way will provide you slightly different results compared to other stretching techniques. The two most popular techniques are static and dynamic stretches. People often get confused which one to use and when.

Static stretch

Fig.1 Forearm Static stretch

Since decades static stretches have been practiced around the world. It is a great way to stretch those tight muscles. Static stretches, as the name suggests involves holding a stretch for certain amount of time. There are no repetitive movements involved. For example, a static stretch is a simple forearm stretch (fig.1) where you hold the position for around 20 seconds. They have been used in the past and are still being used as part of warm-up routine. However research has shown that Dynamic stretches are more appropriate than static stretches when it comes to warm-ups. Implementations of dynamic stretches have been difficult as many athletes still prefer to stick to satic stretch routine.




Dynamic stretches aim to prepare athletes physically and mentally, to cope with the demands of the subsequent activities. They are sports specific, as it involves similar movements which will occur in the sport or training routine. They are believed to sensitize the neuromuscular system better than static stretches, considering the movements involved. Looking at variety of sports and exercise routines, there are plenty of options for dynamic stretches. Some examples for dynamic Stretches would be butt kicks (fig.2), inch worm, lunges, and kicks.



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Let’s do it right – 5 essential exercise tips

Let’s do it right – 5 essential exercise tips

Exercise is great for everyone, as they help maintain your physical and mental wellness. Exercises can be divided into different categories depending on what we are trying to achieve. There are strengthening exercises, stretching exercises, balance and coordination exercises and cardiovascular (aerobic) exercises. They can be further divided into their respective subcategories.  All the four types of exercises are important in order to achieve a better output with respect to injury prevention and physical and mental fitness.




But if the exercises are done in a wrong manner, they can have a worse effect on your body leading to overuse or acute injuries. In this series of articles “let’s do it right” we will go through the basics of exercising and right form of exercises.

Components of your workout routine

People have a tendency to stick to one kind of workout routine neglecting other variables of exercises. For example, a person who loves to run but ignores stretching and strengthening exercises will have a higher chance of injury than a person doing all three in a balanced way.

A good workout routine involves exercises which target all 4 components of exercise. But being said that it’s not that all the 4 components need to have separate exercises, one exercise can target 2-3 components together. For example Lunges – involves balance, strength and stretch.




Start with warm-up and end with cool down

All your workouts or sports should start with a good 10-15 minutes warm-up. A good warm-up includes body temperature raising activities like jogging or spot jogging followed by dynamic stretches and sports specific or workout specific drills. Whereas cool down should consist of short recovery run or walk and static stretches.

Sequencing of exercises

Stable lumbopelvic area

Exercise technique



Difficulty targeting hamstring flexibility?

 Difficulty targeting hamstring flexibility?

One of the main causes of musculoskeletal injuries is soft tissue tightness or weakness. When we talk about tightness the first muscle that comes to our mind is Hamstring. Hamstring has almost become like a synonym to tightness. Let it be your coach, friend, doctor, physio or social media everyone points out and suggests stretches to relieve hamstring tightness. However, in spite of spending enough time on stretching, many people complain of temporary to no change in its flexibility.



It is important to understand the reason why your hamstring tightens up so easily. It is equally essential to comprehend its significance in injury prevention and treatment, and the correct way to increase its flexibility.

Hamstring functions as a knee flexor (bending knee), moving the heel towards the buttock and also as hip extensors (kicking back) moving the leg to the rear. Hamstring muscle is an antagonist to quadriceps (muscle in front of the thigh). Hamstring helps in deceleration of the lower leg when in movement. The three muscles which are present in the posterior thigh are semimembranosus, semitendinosus and bisceps femoris (short and long head). They all originate from ischial tuberosity (sit bone) and attach on the leg bones (tibia and fibula).







Foam Roller – A friend worth having

Foam Roller

Muscle tightness is a common thing, be it a sportsperson or someone who has a sedentary lifestyle. The only difference would be in the muscle group getting affected with respect to their sport and lifestyle. It will always be the more dominant muscle group used in any sport or activity prone to tightness. For example, a runner would develop tightness in leg muscles, a kayak will develop tightness in upper body and a desk bound person would develop tightness in upper back and neck. Many of the musculoskeletal conditions such as knee pain, hip pain, neck pain, muscle/tendon injuries and many more are a result of muscle tightness.

Muscle tightness and trigger points, commonly known as “Knots” in the muscle, are a result of activities or compensation happening in our bodily movement through our sports or lifestyle. Both have same contributing factors such as training load, poor posture, lifestyle factors, hydration, lack of rest, stress and diet. When these factors increase and exceed our ability to recover, it results is tight muscles and trigger points.



The most commonly used method to target muscle tightness is stretching and massage. Stretching is one of the easiest and cost effective techniques known but it’s also the most ignored and incorrectly done technique at the same time. In many cases only stretching is not sufficient to target muscle tightness. Massage is a convenient and relaxing technique but at the same time costly and time consuming. Not all types of massage target your muscle tightness until they are deep tissue massage or sports massage.

Foam Roller

This is where Foam Roller comes in handy as an easy and convenient way to work on the tight muscles. Foam rolling is a self-administered technique, which is both time and cost effective.




Continue Reading – frequency, duration and technique