Have you been doing yoga for years but still have tight hamstrings?
Have you just been told to practice, keep practicing and the flexibility will come?
Practice is important in developing hamstring flexiblity but what is also important is how you practice and what you practice.
Most of the exercises are based on or similiar to many traditional yoga poses. But I've also included non-traditional variations where appropriate. What differs is what you do within each pose that helps improve hamstring flexiblity.
The exercises can be challenging but they help you to improve stability, body awareness and control and that in turn will, hopefully, lead to more flexibility in hamstring stretches.
You'll also have strong or more capable hamstrings as well as a stronger butt and back muscles.
As well as stretching the hamstrings this book includes counterposes so that you don't suffer from an excess of forward bending. Where forward bending and hamstring stretching can leave you feeling more passive, the counterposing backbends will help you to energize.
How many days a week do you need to practice. I'd suggest a minimum of three, but five would be better. What is equally important is the quality of the attention you put into these exercises. The nature of these exercises requires focused awareness, You have to focus on feeling specific parts of your body so that you can make corrections where required.
It's challenging initially, but you may find the challenge enjoyable just because you know where to put your focus and because with practice you'll notice improvements in awareness. You'll be able to feel parts of your body you weren't aware of, or you'll be able to move parts of your body in ways that you weren't aware of.
Is flexibility guaranteed?
No. I do have students who seem to be permanently tight.
What is guaranteed is better control of your body if you can direct your awareness as instructed.
And to maximize focus ability and controllability the focus in this book is on non-ballistic slow and smooth movemetns. It's not that I'm against ballistic movements. Ballistic movements are fun, especially if you have the flexibility that allows you to do them easily. The muscle control and muscle awareness I teach in this book are some of the exercises that I have used that have allowed me to do ballistic movemetns with more efficiency and east.
And theses exercises have given me better and smoother control of my body. And that's how I've gradualy improved my hamstring flexibitility and how I teach my students to improve their flexiblity.
Note that if you've already got the flexiblity, but lack control (in other words, if you have floppy flexibility but not controllable flexiblity) then the exercises in this book may also help.
Learn how to use Friction to improve leg and arm strength.
Simple exercises with easy to follow instructions
Making difficult poses like Chaturanga Dandasana easier to learn.
Learn Your Body with
Frictional Arm and Leg Strength
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IT Band Anatomy and Biomechanics
Anatomy and Biomechanics for Body Awareness and control focuses on understanding the anatomy and biomechanics relevant to feeling your body and controlling it.
When doing yoga poses or exercises for balance, stability and responsiveness are basic requiremenets for finding and keeping balanced.
Foot Anatomy and Biomechanics including Tibialis Posterior, Peroneus Longus, Peroneus Brevis and Tibialis Anterior .
Serratus Posterior Inferior can be used to help anchor the latissimus dorsai muscle (making it easier to do chin ups for example).
Having difficulty bending your thoracic spine backwards? Use your Levator Costarum muscles to lift your back ribs. Then use your erector spinae to bend your spine (and ribcage) backwards.
Improve Strength, Flexiblity, Body Awareness. Muscle control is at the heart of all of these.
You can practice scapular control with the arm movements of the dance of shiva. Scapular stabilization and control can be important when trying to bind in yoga poses like Marichyasana A.
Lifting up into eka pada bakasana from marichyasana A with tips on lifting up and balancing while transitioning from the binding yoga pose to the arm balance.
Grabbing a wrist behind your back. Tips for Binding in Marichyasana C.
How to grab your hand behind your back. Tips for binding in Marichyasana A.
Modified Marichyasana B is done with the other leg not in lotus. This pose can still be challenging to bind it, so some tips on how to bind with awareness.
Steps for working towards bound side angle so that you can bind a little more easily.
Steps for Binding in Seated Half Bound Lotus Pose as well as modifications if you can't bind, and actions you can do when you do bind.
Tips for working towards binding in Bound Twisting Side Angle Pose.
Balancing in side plank can be made easier to learn if you learn the necessary actions step-by-step with this sensational yoga poses yoga tutorial.
The standing forward bend yoga pose can be used to stretch or strengthen the hamstrings and glutes. It can also be used to stretch and strengthen the calves and as a balance exercise.
Yoga forward bends includes forwards bends for the hips and spine. Forward bends for the hips include both bent and straight straight positions.
Your iphone needs power in order to sense your touch. Proprioception needs muscle activity in order to sense your body.
Some simple exercises so that you can work towards the pistol squat gradually.