Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Accepted Wisdom

So I have read a couple of articles lately that say you should not stretch before a workout. One even included this amazing and colorful quote from none other than fitness guru Jack LaLanne : "Warming up is the biggest bunch of horseshit I've ever heard in my life. Fifteen minutes to warm up! Does a lion warm up when he's hungry? 'Uh-oh, here comes an antelope. Better warm up.' No! He just goes out and eats the sucker."
But as any dancer can tell you, stretching is important! Right?
Well, maybe yes, maybe no. My teacher advocates stretching (at least the calves and thighs if nothing else) after class/running/etc. And stretching is important for overall flexibility and extensions, yes?
Well, it turns out you should really only be stretching after you work out, rather than before, and not just plain cold, which is what I usually do on days when I have no class. But... hmm. I can't really jog or even walk much these days. I labor along with a very short and relatively mild bike ride most Friday mornings, but we are talking a few miles at most (as opposed to the 20+ I used to be able to do). And my hip joints pop so very uncomfortably and disconcertingly every time they hit a développé or grand battemant. So maybe I will just keep up with the hip stretches before class and then only do the other stuff afterward?
Ugh. So confusing.

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