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Dynamic stretching involves taking the muscles, joints, nerves and fascia through the ranges of movement necessary for the particular exercise you are planning to do, slowly building speed as you repeat the movements.There is not a set amount of time or reps for dynamic stretching – it depends on the sport or activity you are about to do, how warm you already are and how static you have been that day so far. You basically start slowly, with a small range. When the movement feels free and easy you then slowly increase the range and speed of the movement bit by bit.
Dynamic stretching should be exercise-specific . Dynamic stretching for endurance running, for example, does not take as long as kick boxing because with the latter you are taking your muscles and joints through much larger, more varied ranges of movement and at higher speeds.Below are some examples of dynamic stretching for common muscle groups. You might be pleasantly surprised that you do a number of them already as part of your warm up in which case keep up the good work! Remember always start slowly and then build up the speed and range gradually.
Dynamic stretch for gluts: Walk lifting knees up to chest x30
Dynamic stretch for quads: Walk and then heels to bum x 30
Dynamic stretch for hams and hip flexors: Swing your legs forwards and backwards with momentum
Dynamic stretch for adductors of hip: side step to the left x30 and to the right x 30. Or swing leg across you body (hold onto something)
Dynamic stretch combining all of the above: stand and lift your leg with the knee bent and pointing forwards. Then take the knee so it is pointing out to the side x15. Then do the same but with your knee straight and knee pointing up to the ceiling x15. Both legs.
Do the same as (5) but in reverse
Dynamic stretch for back/ abdominals/ shoulders: stand and swing your arms to twist your body in both directions twisting one way and then the other x30
Dynamic stretch for shoulders/back/ abdominals: Swing arms up and down – opposites sides x30 and same sides x309) Now methodically go through each technique or movement you are about to perform slowly and then faster until you are doing them full speed.
Please note that although the advice and exercises provided are designed to assist your recovery they are not a replacement for seeing a Physiotherapist or Osteopath. It is essential that you always make sure you see your Doctor, Osteopath or Chartered Physiotherapist beforehand to diagnose your injury and guide you through recovery.
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