Legs to tight

Discussion in 'Muay Thai' started by Richie williams, Aug 15, 2018.

  1. Richie williams

    Richie williams White Belt

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    Hi guys. First post. I've recently started training in muay thai, but I am really struggling with body kicks. Everything just feels so tight. I stretch alot but not really getting anywhere. Has anyone got any tips for someone who is abnormally stiff?? I also train in boxing but love the muay thai training and don't want to give up. T.i.a
     
  2. pdg

    pdg Senior Master

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    Just keep working on it.

    Unless you've got a proper medical condition that restricts your movement, then the only reason you find it difficult is because it's new and your body doesn't understand what the hell you're expecting it to do ;)

    Don't push too high and too hard with kicks until your flexibility is better, straining a muscle won't help anything...

    Do a decent warmup before stretching, and do a decent cool down after - stretching cold isn't a great idea (imo) and not winding down will lead to soreness.

    If you have the option, see a physical therapist - generic advice off the internet might be great, but it might make it worse.

    Most of all, don't give up.
     
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  3. Richie williams

    Richie williams White Belt

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    Thanks for the reply. The lad training me said keep persevering but I was just curious to See If anyone new any little cheats or secrets lol. Righto. I'll keep on it. Determined to win this battle lol
     
  4. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    Heaps of really light kicks working your way up. Get used to the movement.
     
  5. Danny T

    Danny T Senior Master

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    “Recently started”
    Just what does that mean? A few days, weeks, months ago?
    How much time are you putting into stretching and kicking each day?
    Stretching the legs and hips is important and depending on the individual may take more of it. Warm up well, stretch lightly, kick lightly working on bettering the kicking mechanics you need to work on. Slowly increase the power in your kick as well as the height. Use a heavier stretching routine as your cool down. Give it time and you’ll be doing awesome head kicks with ease. Don’t be in a rush, enjoy the training and how it changes you.
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2018
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  6. axelb

    axelb Yellow Belt

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    how long have you been stretching for, and how often do you stretch?

    Flexibility comes with time and the restrictions could be physical, but often they are down to just requiring more time to progress.
     
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  7. Buka

    Buka Grandmaster

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    Welcome to MartialTalk, Richie.

    And also welcome to our world of struggling with Martial Art training. :)
     
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  8. dvcochran

    dvcochran Black Belt

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    The elongation of muscles takes time. Amino acids and potassium will help some, especially with after workout soreness but it will take time and commitment. Were you aware you were "stiff" before you started training? A routine physical and checkup may be smart. If this only surfaced since you started training I would not be worried.
    I really struggled with flexibility when I started. I hit a wall I could not get over it seemed. When I was green belt I decide I was going to improve my stretch or quit. We had a stair rail attached to the wall for stretching that really helped a lot. I also stretched every morning. It took about 4 months but I finally started seeing improvement. It takes time.
     
  9. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    Sometimes a lack of flexibility in the legs is also due in part to muscle weakness. Especially on the outside of the hips - it’s harder to bring your leg up to the side for a side kick and roundhouse kick if muscles like tensor fascia latae aren’t very strong. Combine that with some adductor/groin tightness, and you’ve got a recipe for not getting that leg up high enough for those kicks. Same can be said for hip flexor and hip extensor strength. Often times people see that weakness as a lack of flexibility rather than for everything it really is.

    But regardless, there’s no quick cure. Yoga can definitely help. I hate yoga. But a great strength and conditioning coach’s advice definitely holds true - most often, the exercises you hate most are the ones you need most. We typically hate the stuff we’re horrible at.
     
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  10. jobo

    jobo Senior Master

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    Yes I'm abnormally stiff as well, the causes can be a combination of a few things, but it all boils down to the same issue, which is your nervous system, is restricting your movements to those it feels are safe for you,

    Tight muscles or rather the muscles don't have enough volume to stretch and your ns, restricts movement to prevent damge, do exercises that increase volume and fill your muscles with bloobrand reprogram you ns

    You don't have enough strength in seldom used muscles ( usually around the groin area)and your n s restricts movement to prevent damage, strength them and reprogram you ns.

    Your ns,is very cautiousI and just restricts your movement to save damage, Either to the muscle or it thinks you will over balance,,usually by locking the opposing muscle, so if your stretch ing your hamstring it locks the quad, this stretch reflex kicks in after 2,3,4seconds so stretch only for 1,2,3 seconds as once it kicks in your stretch is a waste of time, as your now doing an isometric exercise of two muscles fighting each other, and one will win damaging the otherRight

    As good a way as any, is hang a bag, just at the height you can kick and move it up an inch or so a week
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2018
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  11. dvcochran

    dvcochran Black Belt

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    I was totally in agreement until you got to the stretch for 2-3 seconds. How are you going to reprogram if you never get outside the current program?
     
  12. jobo

    jobo Senior Master

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    Very slowly, I'm talking about the S-T-R-E-T-C-H part of stretching, where you going in to new ground, certainly you can do gentle stretching fi r as long as you like !

    So for instance out you leg on a table or a window ledge or what ever is the correct height for you, so your leg is slightly bent away from straight, then straighten it, hold for three seconds and relax before the stretch reflex kicks in and repeat. Or if your doing hip/splits type excercise, splay your legs till it just starts to hurt, then rock on your hips so one goes tight and the other relaxes, then the stretch is only a couple of seconds long.

    If your doing actual kicks, start low and slowly increase the height with each kick and each session, then the actual time of each stretch is less than a second

    As above there are multiple reasons why your ns might be restricting the movement, if it's at least partly because it thinks you will over balance, then you need to do the actual kicking as well as more stationary stretches, or you may as I did find all your flexibility gains disappear as soon as it's live action
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2018
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