Relax into stretch confussed

Discussion in 'Flexibility, Mobility, and Movement' started by Gary Wilson, Nov 21, 2018.

  1. Gary Wilson

    Gary Wilson Triple-Digit Post Count

    Ok so ive had a quick flick through the book, im no wiser than before i read it.
    I get the whole relax and breath stuff i think but i was expecting some kind of routine to follow, unless ive missed something there is just a ton of stretches listed and no routine?
  2. offwidth

    offwidth More than 5000 posts

    I'm not sure there needs to be a 'routine' per se...

    RIS provides a whole bunch of tools to put in your mobility toolbox.

    Pull them out and use as needed.

    Same goes for Super Joints...
    Oscar likes this.
  3. Gary Wilson

    Gary Wilson Triple-Digit Post Count

    So i just chose any of the stretches and do them in any order i like?

    Also i basicly tense up the muscle im stretching while taking breaths?
  4. Ryan T

    Ryan T More than 500 posts

    I've read it as well. I think it's more conceptual and leaves the door open for you to do the ones you think you need. I always want someone to tell me what to do with general programming, etc... but sometimes you just gotta listen to your body and find out what it needs!
    Gary Wilson likes this.
  5. Gary Wilson

    Gary Wilson Triple-Digit Post Count

    Well i can do the stretches i think i need without reading through a book!

    I was hoping for something like flexible steal
  6. jef

    jef I am a student of strength. Certified Instructor

    I am going to answer to your question by another question : what is your goal ?
    Two people reading RIS will do different things is one wants to achieve a split and the other not.
  7. Gary Wilson

    Gary Wilson Triple-Digit Post Count

    No im not intrested in doing splits, my hamstrings and hips are very tight due to driving 1000 miles a week for a living.

    Flexible steal has been really good at loosening me up the last 2 months done 2/3 times a week but my hips are still extremely tight so im looking for something to loosen hips and hams ideally
  8. Oscar

    Oscar Quadruple-Digit Post Count

    I think it's a fair question, I had the same doubt after reading the book. As suggested above, the book is more about concepts and you'll have to assess what you need yourself.

    If the hips are your issue, maybe you can do S&S stretches + a hip flexor stretch. That could be a program minimum to follow for a month and then reassess. Adding bretzels is an alternative too. You can do this routine applying the Relax Into Stretch principles.

    Just an idea.
    jef, Gary Wilson and Antti like this.
  9. RobB

    RobB Double-Digit Post Count


    It might be worth looking at the Stretch Therapy videos (Absolute Beginner's Stretching Series). The e-mail discounts are real! Each series is split into a small number of 'walk-through' sessions. Then you can go ahead and tailor to your own needs. All series are comprehensive (cover all major areas of the body): the second series introduces contraction: relaxation stretching and the third something else to deepen the stretches. I'm still working with the material in the first one.
    Gary Wilson likes this.
  10. Steve Freides

    Steve Freides Forum Administrator Senior Certified Instructor

    @Gary Wilson, read the book again, pick a stretch that targets something you want to work on, and post a video here. The devil is in the details and you don’t need a routine.

    Gary Wilson likes this.
  11. Bauer

    Bauer More than 500 posts

    @Gary Wilson : Congrats on making good progess with Flexible Steel! Keep working on that mobility.

    That being said, this is how I do it.
    Each day I do 1-3 stretches, some out of RiS, some from other sources. I then do them for 2-3 sets (mostly not pushing hard). I often combine them with either Original Strength stuff or I try to move my limb actively into the stretch (think: Karate Kick).

    I do most stretches only once per week, sometimes as little as once every two weeks. And this works! The thing is: This is a marathon and you need to be patient and keep on doing the work. I have made tremendous progress over the last 11 months after comitting myself to gaining mobility.

    E.g. on mondays I first do straight kicks to loosen up the hammies and then take a kb and do the Good Morning Hamstring Stretch from Flexible Steel. However, I use the stretching style from relax into stretch and not the FS style.
    Gary Wilson likes this.
  12. Gary Wilson

    Gary Wilson Triple-Digit Post Count

    Cheers guys,
    I like the idea of doing different stretches every day rather than the same ones.
    Think i will aim for the same, 3 sets of 3 stretches, some from flexible steel some from RIS.
    Tried to do my workout today amd have slight groin pain, im sure its from trying to stretch that area too much the last week
    Bauer likes this.
  13. Steve Freides

    Steve Freides Forum Administrator Senior Certified Instructor

    Remember that you are trying to relax your muscles, not really stretching anything.

    Bret S., Gary Wilson and Bauer like this.
  14. Ryan T

    Ryan T More than 500 posts

    This is a great reminder Steve.

    The purpose of RIS is really more about teaching your body that it is safe to go into certain ranges of motion that are or were inaccessible. The maximal tensing and release temporarily suspends the stretch reflex and the exhale and relax into the stretch is ever-so-gradually reprogramming your body's software to recognize that range of motion is safe.

    There are plenty of times that your muscles actually need to be stretched, but perhaps not for the purpose of extending your range of motion. For me, it is in the evening after foam rolling. Hip flexor, tactical frog, hamstring, quads, brettzel... I'm not really trying to extend my ROM, but more make sure these muscles have been thoroughly wrung out and don't tighten up. That being said, my muscles are worn out enough from training and foam rolling that I can relax into the stretch better.
  15. Steve Freides

    Steve Freides Forum Administrator Senior Certified Instructor

    @Ryan T, I prefer to think of it in even simpler terms:

    1. Your body won't let you get into positions it thinks you can't get out of.

    2. You move yourself into near-end-of-range-of-motion positions and tense your muscles to demonstrate to your body that you _can_ be strong there.

    3 Your body says, "OK, now that I've seen we can be strong there, I'm willing to go there, stay there, and relax there."

    The beautiful thing is that you can't tense in truly the extreme end of your ROM, so you get close by going nearly as far as you can, you tense, you relax, and then you move a little further into that same direction and tense again - a few cycles of this and, voila, you've improved both your strength and your flexibility.

    The even shorter version: get strong where you want to be flexible.
    Anna C and Gary Wilson like this.
  16. Gary Wilson

    Gary Wilson Triple-Digit Post Count

    So could i put the same technique to flexible steel?
    I've been just doing a stretch for 30s rhen going to the next one, i have gained some flexibility but maybe if i spend longer in the stretch position?

    Ive been doing

    Arm bar
    Lat pull over
    Good morning


    Prying squat

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