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Old 01-04-2011, 07:54 PM   #1
Patrick Donnelly
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Default Side-to-side Splits

Ok, how do you do these? I can currently sit on the floor in a straddle between 90-120 degrees, but getting to 180 degrees seems pretty impossible. I've had this same level of flexibility for years, even though I've since obtained the front-to-back splits and frequently work the "pancake" stretch. I really just have no idea how to stretch this one.

Right now, I'd be happy with the static passive flexibility, though I'd eventually like to be able to hold it as a static active position for handbalancing.
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Old 01-06-2011, 07:45 AM   #2
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Some people have some bony impingement of the hip joint which impairs them from getting the middle split.

You'll see this in some of the competitive gymnasts where they can't get it even with massive amounts of stretching (likely you may see this in some of the team gymnasts).

most people can get within 4-6" of the ground if they have that bony restriction of the hip joint though.

It MAY be something else though such as tight muscles specifically in one plane but I'd have to take a look to see if it's something like that
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Old 01-06-2011, 03:02 PM   #3
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Check frog split stretch.
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Old 01-07-2011, 05:42 AM   #4
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Blair, I hadn't seen that one before; thanks. I definitely feel a whole lot more from that one that I do with pancake stretches (even when I'm going deep into it).

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most people can get within 4-6" of the ground if they have that bony restriction of the hip joint though.
The way you phrased that makes me wonder why I never try to train the split lowering down into it. I always sit down on the floor then push myself into it. Is one way or the other preferable for this?

I haven't yet gotten to a point where I feel any impingements, even if I lower down into it. I get about 18" from the floor before having to drop out of the movement.
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Old 01-07-2011, 06:42 AM   #5
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You are supposed to train it by lowering down into it
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Old 01-07-2011, 03:02 PM   #6
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Hm, never got the memo.

I'm going to get started on those frog stretches and try lowering into it more often, then report back in a few weeks with any progress (or lack thereof). Any other tips?
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Old 01-07-2011, 07:28 PM   #7
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Yeah, i usually do a couple of cycles of different stretches and always hold about 5-10s after the muscles release... butyou probably already know that.

So work on a bunch of stuff and rotate through. I usually go through all of the splits, core stretches, maybe some calves, shoulders, etc and then go through the whole set again 2-3 more times
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Old 02-04-2011, 06:58 PM   #8
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Ok, I'm seeing noticeable progress with the frog split stretch, even though I ought to be doing it more often. My hips have started feeling funny lately, though. I figure I'm developing some sort of imbalance. They just feel funny, but they feel "normal" in external rotation of the leg. In particular:

1. Lay down, looking towards the ceiling with your feet in the regular position, then turn your legs so your feet point left and right
2. Stand and bring one leg up in front so both the hips and knees are at 90 degrees, then swinging the leg out to the side

Both of these can often get the hip joint to pop (like you're cracking your knuckles), and it relieves the funny feeling for a while.


Any tips on what I should be stretching to counteract this? I don't want to just stop stretching, since there's no way in hell I'm ever getting a planche without a full 180 degree straddle hold.
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Old 02-05-2011, 12:52 AM   #9
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check internal and external rotation of knee and hip?

lay on back, knee at 90-90 in air, check to see how far you can push it to either side with no resistance.
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Old 02-05-2011, 10:01 AM   #10
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Stretching doesn't create imbalances, but it can show them.

Do you know what side you're getting the popping/pulling on.... inferior/superior/anterior/posterior or multiple combinations of the sensations?

I couldn't actually tell too well from your description... well, actually I should be in MOn so you can ask/show me then if you want.

You remember what i told you about stretching the shoulders when you were getting the clicking? Same things applies here.

Could be tight capsule, ligaments, tight muscles, etc. It's pretty hard to tell what's going on without some more in depth testing and stuff like that
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