Workouts can sometimes be a pain literally. I’m not just talking about not wanting to exercise either. I’m referring to the aches and pains that often times occur when we don’t include some type of flexibility movements into our exercise routines. Continuously strengthening and shortening muscles through activity will not only produce muscle imbalances and compensatory movement patterns, but it can also cause pain and injury and a lot of unnecessary suffering. We’re all guilty of blowing off flexibility too at one time or another especially after a grueling workout, stretching is the last thing you feel like doing.
Two of the most common pains that I hear about and have experienced myself are low back pain and heel pain. Low back pain is extremely common, even with non-exercisers. In fact 80% of adultshave or will experience low back pain. And the other common problem, heel paineffects many new and chronic over exercisers. Both of these conditions are usually caused by tight muscles. Low back pain can be a result of tight hip flexors (the muscle group that lifts your thighs) and heel pain may be caused by tight calves that pull on the connective tissue (fascia) that covers the heel and foot. I know for sure that whenever I don't do my rolling and stretching, I get a nagging ache in my left heel and my back gets a little jacked up.
There’s great news though. You can get relief by adding just 2 simple stretches to your post exercise routine. All you have to do is perform a little self myo-fascial release with a foam rollercombined with static stretching and you’ll be able to prevent or eliminate those nagging pains. Below is a quick video that demonstrates what I call the “Must Do 2”. You don’t have to spend hours stretching, just give yourself 5 quick minutes and it’ll heal your pain, I promise.
Here’s the “Must Do 2”
1.) SMR (Self Myo-Fascial Release) of the IT (Ilio-Tibial ) Band plus a kneeling hip flexor stretch.
2.) SMR (Self Myo-Fascial Release) of the calves plus lower leg stretch (including gastrocnemius and soleus).
If you’ve had low back pain or heel pain, try these 2 stretches and let me know how it goes in the comment section.