One key facet of gymnastics training is flexibility. If you participate in this sport or have watched it on TV you know how remarkably flexible these athletes are.

When working on flexibility training for gymnastics it is very important to always include a proper warm-up. Warming the muscles up will help them to become more limber and will reduce the chances that you pull a muscle while you are stretching. It will also be beneficial as it will help you to reach new lengths with the training and thus show a great improvement.

When performing your stretching exercises you will want to include ones that are typically seen in gymnastics routines such as the front and middle splits. The most important thing to remember when trying to improve this area is that you are holding them for at least 30 seconds. Far too many people get into position, hold for 5 seconds and then give up because it is too hard. That is not going to get them any significant amount of improvement because their muscles have not had a chance to relax in the position and be pushed further. Rather, get into the position and then focus on your breathing. Take a few deep breaths and really concentrate on trying to relax the muscles. It will be hard because they are in a position that they are not used to but the more you practice the more comfortable you will get with the movement.

Another option is to do some partner-assisted stretching by having a partner push your limbs slightly further than you can go alone, hold the position and press against them (contracting the muscles) and then relax and let them push a little further. You will be quite surprised how much further you are able to stretch after this pressing phase is complete.

So if this is your sport of choice make sure you develop a really good stretching routine to add to your training. The improvements you will make if you stick to it will be very noticeable.



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