Monday, October 26, 2015

Calf Stretch Variations - EDGE Daily and Pre-workout Corrective Exercise #5

Last week I talked about how most of us have lost good ankle and foot mobility.  Again,  this is often caused by tight calves, which can lead to compensatory foot, knee and back pain.   After you massage your calves with a roller, your hands (or your favorite massage therapist if you are lucky enough J) you want to stretch the calves well.  

Pre-workout Corrective Exercise #5 :  Calf Stretch Variations  

Alignment Issue:  Foot pronation and outward rotated foot.   Limited ankle flexion.  
Muscle Imbalance:   Tight calves (Gastrocnemius and Soleus)
Pain Symptoms:  Achilles tendonitis.   Foot and shin pain.  Compensatory lower back  and knee soreness.
Common Cause:  Sitting down for long periods.  Non-flat shoes (any shoe with a slight lift in the back compared to front).  Excessive exercise (specifically running or walking)
How this works: .  Static stretching is an effective technique for lengthening muscle and myofascial tissue.  
Equipment:  None  

Upper Calf Stretch using step, roller, or Bosu


·         Put the front of your foot (not your toes) on the edge of a step or Bosu.   Allow your body weight to slowly drop on to the heel of that foot.  The other foot should be next to the ‘stretch’ foot for light stability, but have little weight on it.   
·         For a even stretch make sure your knee is in line with the direction of your food – straight ahead. 
·         To emphasize the inside or the outside of the upper calves you can slightly rotate the knee in or out.  
·         Keep posture erect during the stretch as it creates proper stretch alignment. 
·         HOLD STRETCH position for at least 30 seconds each leg.  

Lower Calf Stretch using step, roller or Bosu


·         As with the first stretch, put the ball of your foot on the edge of a step, foam roller or Bosu – except this time, bend the knee of your stretch leg about 20 to 45 degrees. This will emphasize the Soleus muscle as part of your lower calves.     
·         Your non-stretch leg will be staggered behind, and you will bend forward putting weight into the front foot. 
·         Keep posture erect during the stretch as it creates proper stretch alignment.  

HOLD STRETCH position for at least 30 seconds each leg.

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