When is the right time to transition from static stretching to active stretching?

This is a common, and very good question asked by many of our clients. Rezilient offers three levels of stretching each increasing in intensity. The three level system was designed to be a bilateral fluid transition from level to level. Meaning, that the system was designed to both increase level of stretch and activity when necessary or decrease stretch intensity and activity when indicated.

Increase or Decrease My Level?

The next logical follow up question should be…. When? When do I increase my level or decrease my level? The answer is multifactorial and this information is in no way intended to replace direct consultation with your professional stretcher. The basis on mobility up and down the stretch continuum is based on our client’s goals. Understanding those goals can change allows the professional stretcher to recommend the appropriate level of stretch and frequency.

For example, a recent client started his programing with the Relax stretch. Being a 50-year-old triathlete and medical professional, he felt he was losing mobility due his prolonged postures. He enjoyed the relaxing nature of the mild stretch and he enjoyed the deep soft tissue work that was integrated into the program to focus on his problem areas like his upper back and neck. After several sessions, his professional stretcher discovered that this client had a lengthy training schedule coming up for an Olympic level triathlon. The client noted tightness in his hip flexors and lower back prevented him from achieving his longer rides.

Rezilient Active Stretch

The Rezilient Active stretch was recommended and implemented on every other stretch basis to help this client achieve his goals. The Rezilient Active Stretch helped restore the mobility he needed to complete his training and ultimately the competition. This winter being his training down time he has returned to the Rezilient Relax Stretch and plans to implement the Rezilient Intense prior to his next training cycle.

That clients story is very different from one of our 75 year old clients who was given a stretch session by her children for her birthday. Her children noted that she had been sitting more and more and felt she was losing flexibility in her hips causing her to lean forward. Wanting to clear this client of any serious musculoskeletal issues that would cause forward lean she was referred to a physical therapist for an evaluation and clearance for the stretching program.

The physical therapist discovered that stiff hip joints were her primary issue followed by an adaptive shortening of her muscles. The physical therapist treated the hip joint stiffness and released the client to the stretcher to implement gentle stretching. Given the clients issues and consultation with the physical therapist, the Rezilient Relax Stretch was the most appropriate for this client to achieve her goals. This client has remained in the Relax phase for several months with great mobility improvements. The take home message here is that the stretch intensities can be altered to help you meet your current and future goals.