Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Flexibility Training on the TRX

Flexibility can and should be trained as part of your routine, just like training for strength, speed, or power. The American College of Sports Medicine just released new guidelines for flexibility exercise.

            "Flexibility Exercise
Adults should do flexibility exercises at least two or three days each week to improve range of motion.
Each stretch should be held for 10-30 seconds to the point of tightness or slight discomfort.
Repeat each stretch two to four times, accumulating 60 seconds per stretch.
Static, dynamic, ballistic and PNF stretches are all effective.
Flexibility exercise is most effective when the muscle is warm. Try light aerobic activity or a hot bath to warm the muscles before stretching."

But why stretch with the TRX straps? Because there is nothing this simple piece of equipment can't do! That is why!
•    The TRX will act as a "partner" allowing you to try out the PNF style of stretching. There is where you contact and relax your muscle to allow for a greater stretch.
•    It will help assist you into greater ranges of motion, deepening your stretch.
•    You can stretch multiple areas with one exercise. Who does't love to multitask! 

Stretching on the TRX as part of a flexibility program can help to diminish many of the aches and pains you experience after a tough workout or sitting at a desk (or on the couch) all day. Building greater flexibility also:

•    Improves circulation
•    Improves range of motion
•    Improves posture
•    Decreases joint stiffness
•    Decreases muscle tension
•    Promotes awareness of body in space
•    Facilitates relaxation

Don't just leave the gym after your workout.  Grab the TRX straps and do a quick stretching routine while your muscle are warm. Or even plan an active recovery day to do a 20-30 minute stretching routine!

Here are 5 stretches you can do with the TRX. There are a ton more, so ask a trainer if you need help stretching in a particular area!


Lower the straps all the ways down and covert to single arm mode. Sitting on the ground, place one heel into the straps. Keeping your back and legs straight slowing walk yourself forward away from the anchor until you feel a stretch in the back of your leg.

Hip Flexors

Raise the straps so they hang around knee height. With your back to the straps, place one foot into the loop. Your knee should comfortably rest on the ground. Lunge out to 90 with the free foot and press forward through the hips to hold the stretch.


Don't forget your calf is made up of two muscles and both need to stretched! With the straps still in single arm mode, stand up and place one heel into the loop and straighten out your leg. Pull back on the strap until you feel a stretch through the upper part of your calf. To target the lower portion of you calf, bend your knee while still pulling back on the strap.


Revert straps back to double arm mode. Grab a hold of each strap and walk away from the anchor. As you get further away, let you arms stretch out to the side until the are in line with your shoulders. Step out with one foot and lunge your body forward while keeping your chest up.


Holding onto the straps, slightly lean back with arms extended and shoulder blades engaged (think like you are trying to squeeze them down and together). This is the starting position. Slowly let your shoulder blades relax. As a result your arms will be pulled forward by the straps. Keeping your body in a straight line, round your upper and hold the stretch. To target your lats, hinge at the hip letting your back flatten out and rotate to one side then the other. 

Blog post by Catie Furbush CSCS.

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