Being flexible allows your body to perform the more technical wrestling moves and helps to avoid injury. If you have a sore back, tight hamstrings or your hips feel stiff, perform these easy-to-follow stretches a few times a week and you’ll soon start feeling the benefits. Here are 7 exercises that UFC gym has chosen for you!
Seated Trunk Twist
Stretches: Back, Abdominals, Obliques
Sit on the floor with your abs engaged, making sure that your legs are together and extended out in front of you. Cross your right foot over your left knee and then gently twist your torso to the right, using your extended left arm to gently push against your right knee for a deeper stretch. Return to the center and repeat on the other side. Perform this move 5 times, holding each twist for at least 30 seconds.
Hip Flexor/Quad Stretch
Stretches: Quads, Hamstrings, Hip Flexors
Kneel with both knees on the floor and place your right leg forward, with your right knee bent at 90 degrees. Your right foot should be under your knee and completely flat, whilst your left foot is angled. With your torso upright and both of your hands placed on your top of your right knee, press your hips forward and lean into the stretch. Do three reps on each side, holding the stretch for 30 seconds each time.
Fold Over Stretch
Stretches: Back, Neck, Hamstrings, Glutes, Calves
Stand up straight, keeping your arms by your side and knees slightly bent with feet hip-width apart. Exhale as you bend forward, relaxing your neck, head and shoulders and lower your head towards the floor. Try to wrap your arms around the backs of your legs however, if you find that to be too difficult, place your hands on an elevated surface or bend your knees more. Hold for 45 seconds to 2 minutes.
Stretches: Back, Glutes, Thighs, Neck, Hamstrings
Touch the soles of your feet together as you sit on the floor. To complete this exercise, grab your feet with your hands and tighten your abdominals. Lower your body towards your feet and stretch to your own limit and then release slowly. Try to hold this position for 45 seconds to 2 minutes.
Stretches: Chest, Hip Flexors, Back, Obliques, Shoulders
Lie face down on the floor and bring your hands in front of your shoulders with your legs extended behind you, close to each other. To lift your belly off the floor, press with your hands, making sure to keep your shoulders down, your pelvis grounded and your abdominals engaged. As you lift your upper body from the mat, try to stretch out by drawing your shoulder blades together and opening up your chest. Perform this 5 times, holding between 30 to 45 seconds.
Stretches: Fingers, Forearms
While kneeling, put your hands on the ground with your fingers pointing towards your knees and your forearms facing outwards and slowly lean backwards. Hold and apply gentle pressure, repeating at least 3 times and for 30 seconds each time.
Standing Triceps Stretch
Stretches: Back, Triceps, Shoulders, Neck, Abs
As you stand tall with your feet slightly apart, extend your arms over your head, and bend your left elbow so that the palm of your hand touches your upper back. With your other hand, grab bent elbow and pull back gently towards your head. Hold for 45 seconds and then repeat on the opposite side.
UFC Gym is dedicated to providing the best martial arts training available in Vietnam. Come in and talk to one of our champion coaches about which stretches best suit your needs and sign up for a free trial today!
Baptiste Solente (Calipso)