Are you tight or weak?
What is better for improving muscle length and overall mobility?
Should we be focusing on static stretching only or strengthening thru your available range of motion?
There is a lot of outlandish narratives I have heard over the years…. breaking down adhesions, disruption of scar tissue, releasing tissues, or lengthening muscles to improve posture as a reason for long sustained static stretching positions?
We are all time pressed so what can we do to be more time efficient? I don’t know about you, but I enjoy stretching? I feel good after? Have less discomfort? But Why? Is it just a perception? Is it just improving our tolerance to stretch? Or is there a neurological effect or sensory adaption?
Yoga flow and pilates actually involve a strengthening component, that includes some element of ‘stretch’ and can be more beneficial because these activities provide us strength thru the range of movement.
Why is this important? In the clinic, I constantly hear my muscle feels ‘tight’, and no doubt it does, yet when I assess the length it is near or above normal, but the strength and load capacity is often lacking. A lot of time, especially in runners, ‘tight’ muscles are in fact fatigued muscles…. therefore a different approach is needed.
Concentrate on your overall training, your rest and recovery and bigger factors on performance and prevention such as sleep and strength training to ensure this imbalance does not occur and your tight muscle is not due to an overworked/ fatigued one and subsequently usually a weak one that is over worked!!!