5 Great Stretches to Improve your Flexibility – Go Grab your Belt!
Here at the Pendergrass Academy we’d like to share 5 Great Stretches that are sure to improve your overall flexibility. These stretches are imperative to any Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu practitioner. The primary muscles we’ll focus on are the lower back, the legs and the shoulders. These stretches will require using our belt. If you don’t have a belt that’s ok, you can still take advantage of these stretches by using a rope or a towel.
Stretch #1: Hamstring Stretch: For this stretch we will utilize the entire length of the belt. Placing foot on the inside center of the belt. Lay on your back and extend the leg up. Our opposite knee can point up and you’re going to pull back gently. Holding it for at least 20 seconds. If you want to increase the pressure of the stretch you can also lay your opposite leg flat and that will help increase the stretch. You’ll do that for both sides.
Stretch #2: Hip/Lower Back Stretch: Next we’re going to wrap the belt around the back of our neck. Letting the leg down gently. This is partially a leg stretch, and a hip stretch as well as a lower back stretch. You can always pull on the belt to help increase the pressure of the stretch. Repeat on both sides for at least 20 seconds.
Stretch #3: Calf Stretch: We’re going to put the belt on the very end of the foot near the toes. We’re going to lift the heel off the mat. Pulling on the belt this will give you a nice little calf stretch.
Stretch #4: Split Stretch: We’ll start off in a middle split for this stretch. We’ll loop our belt around our foot. While gently pulling on the belt lean forward chest to thigh. Gradually increasing the stretch over time. Again 20 seconds repeating it on both sides.
Stretch #5: Shoulder Stretch: For this stretch we’ll double up the belt. Throw it over your shoulder and reach and grab the other end of the belt. Use the lower hand to pull down gently so that we get the stretch on the top arm, and the shoulder. Hold for 20 seconds, making sure to do both sides. This stretch is particularly good for situations where you might be caught in a Kimura or an Americana.
Remember to hold stretches for 20 seconds or longer if you are able, and include both sides. These stretches are a sure fire way to improve your ground game in Jiu-Jitsu. Even if you don’t practice Jiu-Jitsu stretching is good for the body and helps us to stay limber as we age. Thanks for reading! Happy Stretching!
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Pendergrass Academy of Martial Arts
2921 Wakefield Crossing Drive suite 100
Raleigh NC 27614