Stretching has been a key component of many pre-workout rituals. However, the latest scientific studies have called this practice into question. The studies suggest that the old-fashioned stretching which for some reason most of us hyped, may not be what it is cracked up to be. The studies recommend mobility as the key that unlocks the true potential of our bodies and which brings us nearer to peak performance.
Stretching is not necessarily a bad thing, it is only that it doesn’t safeguard you against injury and it doesn’t produce the much-touted reductions in body muscle soreness following days of CrossFit workout. To get you started with mobility training, the following tips are invaluable.
Swapping Out Stretching
Instead of spending your energy on static stretching, learn how to embrace dynamic warm-up. Start by completing moves resembling those you shall be doing in your routine, and this will prepare your body adequately for whatever kind of workout, game or practice that lies ahead of you. CrossFit exercises such as the squat and lateral shuffles will serve to elevate your heartrate while at the same time heating up your muscles and moving your joints effectively.
Picking the Tools of Trade
Mobility goes beyond reach and hold. As an athlete, you need to prepare for the movement by getting the right gear. CrossFit experts recommend that you get three lacrosse balls. Two of the balls should be taped together. After that, get a thick resistance band and a foam roller or PVC pipe. These are the tools you will need for your mobility CrossFit workout.
Getting into Action
Deep tissue work has been known to be a lifesaver for athletes experiencing muscle soreness. You can save lots of cash by utilizing your mobility tools. Foam rollers and lacrosse balls can start you off with rolling away from your muscle soreness. Self-myofascial release is the term used to refer to self-induced deep tissue massage. At first, it may be a bit torturous, but as you grit it out, it will break scar tissue and enhance circulation.
Applying Traction to Muscles
The giant rubber resistance band is the piece of equipment you need to turn your attention to after sufficiently rolling your muscle soreness out. There are different ways you can use the stretch band to apply traction or tension to your body muscles.
You can start off by looping the band around an anchor bolted to the ground. Then, facing the anchored object, carefully place your hand up and move it through the side of the band with an open end while your palm is facing up in such a way that the band will rest on your wrist. Gradually lift your arm overhead and pull it slowly away from the anchor to let it gently open the space between your shoulder joints and your wrist. You can repeat this move using both your arms.
You do not have to take months or years to maximize your mobility. In fact, it is advisable that you assess your mobility before you begin your stretch session and after to monitor and evaluate its effectiveness. For instance, if you do a bodyweight squat and then a round of self-massage, you should notice an improvement in positioning.
Utilize the feedback you get from reassessment to address deficiencies in your CrossFit programme, upstream and downstream starting from the source of tightness or pain.