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  1. #1
    Unknown User is offline Junior Member
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    Default How to avoid stretching Ligaments?

    Greetings,
    I have started working with Pavel's "Relax into stretch" some time ago, but always end up stretching my knee Ligaments in most of the back, Leg and Hip exercises. I already tried bending the knees more and also made sure not to force the stretch.

    I would be very thankful if someone posts suggestions on how to avoid stretching these Ligaments. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Speakeasy is offline Member
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    Since nobody has jumped in, I'll take a stab at replying.

    Would you mind indicating why you feel you are stretching your knee ligaments? You feel pain within the knees presumably? It is often the case that the joints can improve/recover if the activity causing the joint pain is ceased for awhile, assuming of course major injury has not been sustained. Bending the knees helps, but I didn't find it sufficient if the pain had already begun.

    It is felt by some experts that stretching is best preceded by strength training so that the muscles take some of the load off the joints. Depending on your goals, I would recommend a strengthening program, which you really should followed after you spend time on conditioning your knees to work out any minor, but still easily correctable, problems. To this end I personally would recommend Convict Conditioning, which has been much discussed on this board. It will take you through easy initial steps which will heal deficiencies in the joints, assuming there they are not severe, in which case you really see get medial attention. I guess, to get help on this board, you have to provide the knowledgeable, and usually helpful, people here more info about your self.

    CC is a bit of a long-term commitment. If you are a young hotshot who needs to get into shape for a martial arts contest in 5 weeks you'll have to defer to others here for help.
    Last edited by Speakeasy; 01-29-2011 at 05:29 PM. Reason: Spelling

  3. #3
    Steve Freides is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Unknown User View Post
    Greetings,
    I have started working with Pavel's "Relax into stretch" some time ago, but always end up stretching my knee Ligaments in most of the back, Leg and Hip exercises. I already tried bending the knees more and also made sure not to force the stretch.

    I would be very thankful if someone posts suggestions on how to avoid stretching these Ligaments. Thanks.
    Tough to say without seeing you in person. Could be too much, too soon, could be the way you're doing some of the stretches, be great if you could post a video, or at least tell us what stretch is giving you what problem.

    -S-
    KBNJ.COM - Steve Freides, RKC Team Leader

  4. #4
    Unknown User is offline Junior Member
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    I didn't suppose getting a reply that fast. Thanks.

    Would you mind indicating why you feel you are stretching your knee ligaments? You feel pain within the knees presumably?
    Everytime I stretch I feel an "unhealthy" pain right behind my knee. It's in the joint itself, not in the muscles.

    It is often the case that the joints can improve/recover if the activity causing the joint pain is ceased for awhile, assuming of course major injury has not been sustained. Bending the knees helps, but I didn't find it sufficient if the pain had already begun.
    I suppose the injury isn't severe, the slight pain I felt after the exercise is barely noticable today. Moving and bending the knees lightly seems to help.

    It is felt by some experts that stretching is best preceded by strength training so that the muscles take some of the load off the joints.
    I always stretch after training. My training routine is a mixture of Pavel's "The naked Warrior" and the book "You are your own Gym" by Mark Lauren. I also do some mobility drills from "Super Joints", which is also written by Pavel Tsatsouline.

    The Focus of my training are One-handed Pushups, Handstand Pushups and Pistols.
    The Pistols themselves never hurt my knee by the way, the pain originates from the stretching.

    CC is a bit of a long-term commitment. If you are a young hotshot who needs to get into shape for a martial arts contest in 5 weeks you'll have to defer to others here for help.
    I am doing strength training for my health, Self-Developement and also to eradicate possible muscle imbalances caused by other hobbies (Circusarts mainly)... So I am not in a rush.

    Could be too much, too soon, could be the way you're doing some of the stretches, be great if you could post a video, or at least tell us what stretch is giving you what problem.
    The stretches I have had problems with are the Toe touch, the kneeling hip flexor stretch, the Cossack, the front split, the bent press stretch and the road kill split, all of these as described in "relax into stretching". I have no camera at the moment, but if the opportunity arises I will tape myself.

  5. #5
    Steve Freides is offline Senior Member
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    RIS mentions that it can take a while for the connective tissue to get used to splits. What can I say except, yes, that's true. Take it easy, and don't be afraid to cycle your work, IOW, if you find you're getting discomfort in your knees, take a week off from stretching or at least a week off from anything that even vaguely gives you that discomfort, then ease back into it for a few weeks, gradually working harder throughout the cycle. My knees sometimes bother me, too, if I haven't done splits for an extended period of time, but it goes away if I do them even semi-regularly.

    There are some pix of me performing a suspended split on my web site if you want to take a look.

    -S-
    KBNJ.COM - Steve Freides, RKC Team Leader

  6. #6
    faizalenu is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Unknown User View Post
    Greetings,
    I have started working with Pavel's "Relax into stretch" some time ago, but always end up stretching my knee Ligaments in most of the back, Leg and Hip exercises. I already tried bending the knees more and also made sure not to force the stretch.

    I would be very thankful if someone posts suggestions on how to avoid stretching these Ligaments. Thanks.
    Uh, ligaments connect bone-to-bone

    When you change increase joint angle, some ligaments stretch. When you decrease joint angle, those ligaments shorten and others get longer. That is called movement.

    So to keep them from stretching don't move.
    Faizal S. Enu, CFT/RKC/PBA
    My blog: [URL]http://faizalenu.blogspot.com[/URL]
    Workshop Schedule: [URL="http://tinyurl.com/XA-Kettlebell-Workshops"]http://tinyurl.com/XA-Kettlebell-Workshops[/URL]

  7. #7
    Speakeasy is offline Member
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    Thanks for the detailed reply. Steve Freides is correct in his suggestion to cycle your training. I know that when I took two weeks off stretching for splits practice, having felt some pain, my knees felt like new, and it made a big difference to my sense of well-being. Thomas Kurz in his "Stretching Scientifically" book recommends strengthening the legs if necessary before splits training to take the load off the knees. Sounds like your's are pretty strong already though. Just do everything you can in your splits training to shift the emphasis away from stressing the knees to emphasizing opening the hips AND promoting hip external rotation.

    Steve: I checked out your splits photos and they are excellent, especially noteworthy being the ability to do them with either toes pointing up or pointing forward.

  8. #8
    Steve Freides is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Speakeasy View Post
    Steve: I checked out your splits photos and they are excellent, especially noteworthy being the ability to do them with either toes pointing up or pointing forward.
    Thank you, kind person! I don't know that I'm nearly as good with my feet pointing forward - I generally don't worry much about that aspect of my splits.

    -S-
    KBNJ.COM - Steve Freides, RKC Team Leader

  9. #9
    DTris is offline Senior Member
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    You are more advanced than me but if you don't mind. Most of the stretches you mention involve a straight leg. What you might be doing is letting the force of the stretch go into the knee instead of being spread throughout the muscle. If you think of the cossack as an example you are having weight on the heel of the straight leg and then weight at the hip of the straight leg. This could cause pressure similar to how you would snap a toothpick in half. You should try playing with the stretches and trying to feel like the pressure is evenly distributed across the whole leg instead of in one joint or place. One thing to experiment with might be actively pulling the heel down while doing your cossack.

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