One of the biggest complaints we get from new clients is the need for better “flexibility.” Unfortunately flexibility could be a result from either an instability of a joint or pattern, or it could be a true joint mobility issue.
I guess the question we should ask is: ” Do I have a control/stability problem that is making me tight? or is there a true mobility problem?” Mobility issues typically stem from the following: a trigger point, a fascial restriction, or ischemic (blood flow) issue? Research tells us that having a “tight” muscle is not a real thing, so it is beneficial to understand how mobility is affected and what the best ways are to improve said mobility.
First lets assume it is not a motor control or stability related issue. Let’s assume that it is a joint mobility issue or something with your tissue extensibility limited. IN the case of the joint, typically they will be restricted in more than one range of motion, where as tissue extensibility is typically only restricted in one range of movement. Joint issues are typically something you want medical to clear you for before getting into a movement routine but after being cleared, in the world of training, joint issues are helped the most by creating joint distraction with your movement.
Tissue extensibility is typically restricted motion in 1 plane of movement but sometimes more. Working on things like ischemia (or blood flow), trigger points through soft tissue work or loading the muscle eccentrically (like using myofasical stretching or a pin and stretch techniques) will help to create more length and pump blood flow through those tissues.
1/2 Kneeling Rotation
Lastly believe it or not… breathing and using different breathing drills with or without movement (depending on the goal) is a big help when it comes to creating intra abdominal pressure and stability of the core which sometimes is the biggest issue when it comes to mobility problems.
So where do you start? Well come in for an assessment. Lets see what your goals are, what your movement is like and lets create a program that you can start using.