How to Master Stretching Technique With Lastics

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Why Stretching Technique Matters (and How Lastics Helps)

Psoas Hip Flexor
Lastics

Oddly, stretching in fitness has become an afterthought, even though flexibility is considered vital to maintaining a fit and healthy body. Along with cardio and strength workouts, stretching should share an equal piece of the pie. But in the world of fitness, it doesn’t, which begs the question, why not?

Well, as is true with every other physical activity, you need form and technique in order to train the body properly. It’s the only way to get results, and that’s what Lastics does. Lastics is a dance-based stretch that uses techniques dancers use to stay lean and limber. It teaches you how to articulate your body in a way that elongates your muscles from end-to-end. It’s deep and you’ll feel it, and the best part is, it works!  

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Lastics Stance

Lastics Stance
Lastics

Setting yourself up correctly and connecting to your body before you start stretching is an important way to bring your mind into your body. So, to begin, stand with your feet parallel. Take a deep breath in through your nose and feel the air come straight up through the center of your belly like it’s on a straw that then mushrooms into your chest to fill it up and open it.  Feel how that air lightly lifts your ribs off your waist. Let your shoulders drop heavy away from your ears and feel the energy run down your arms and out your fingertips.

Next, flatten your belly, pick up your kneecaps, release your butt cheeks and push down through the balls of your big toes. Stand for a second, close your eyes and feel where you are holding and where you are releasing.  

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Hamstring Stretch

Hamstring Stretch
Lastics

The reason so many people struggle with tight hamstrings is that in an effort to go stretch farther, they bend their knees. But doing so actually defeats the stretch. Always remember, bent is not stretched!

In this stretch, what you want to do is start standing on straight legs and roll down. The top of your head leads. Hang there. Release every part of the upper body. Let the energy drip from your fingertips and the top of your head. Then, pull your belly button up into your spine so it rounds your back, feeling the curve all the way from your tailbone to the base of your skull.  Hold your knees steady (legs straight, not locked, but straight), release your belly and gently reach the top of your head a little closer to the floor. 

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Side Stretch

Side Stretch
Lastics

Find a nice square stance, with your legs a bit wider than your hips. Reach your fingers to the ceiling first. You should feel the sides of your body lengthen and the muscles along your ribs stretch. Continue reaching up as you bend to the side, making sure you don’t let your hips swing out in the opposite direction. When you’ve gone as far as you can, bring your bicep to your ear and straighten the elbow.

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Psoas/Hip Flexor Stretch

Psoas Hip Flexor
Lastics

The important thing here is to get into the lunge properly first. Make sure your bent knee in the front is directly over your foot to create a right angle. Then push through your back heel to straighten that leg as much as you possibly can.

Holding your legs where they are, allow the weight of your pelvis to drop down into your hips toward the floor. Your back knee is going to want to bend - don’t let it! Keep pushing the ball of your back foot into the floor, reaching the heel away.

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Calf Stretch

Calf Stretch
Lastics

Stand with one leg in front and one leg behind. Hold onto your hips and bend forward to a flat back. Adjust your hips so they are even, then bend all the way down to touch the floor. If you can’t touch the floor in this position, simply rest your hands on your front leg and hold steady wherever you're comfortable. Rock your weight onto the back leg and flex the front foot. Don’t let either knee bend.

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Neck Stretch

Neck Stretch
Lastics

It’s very common on this stretch to use your hands to pull on your head. Not only is that unnecessary, it also robs your body of the opportunity to “think for itself.” Let your ear fall toward your shoulder and relax the muscles in your neck. You'll feel the muscle from the shoulder to the earlobe “open up.” Then, pull your shoulder down, away from your ear, and hold it there while you reach the other ear a tiny bit closer to your opposite shoulder.

Very important: before you bring your head back to center, release the shoulder you are pressing down.

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