Pnf stretching routine exercises are highly effective techniques that can loosen up even the tightest of muscles. Tight muscles are an unfortunate results of sitting down for long periods of time, muscle imbalances, and several other unfortunate reasons.
Many jobs nowadays require the employee to remain seated for hours on end. This type of demand put on the body is intimation that there will be tightness in the hip flexors. If you fall under this category, don’t worry. There’s a pnf stretching technique to combat this from worsening.
When static stretching or even ballistic stretching isn’t enough, perhaps you should try out some pnf stretching routine exercises. Listed below are some techniques you can use to help you with some common areas in need of pnf stretching.
Pnf stretching routine exercises for hamstrings
Pnf stretching for hamstrings is among one of the most popular types of stretches out there. This should be no surprise as the hamstrings are typically the muscle most people complain about being tight.
This is due in large part of the often overbearing quadriceps muscle. Such an imbalance usually calls for some well developed pnf stretching routine exercises to help counteract it.
To pnf stretch your hamstrings, lie on your back with your arms at your side and your legs straight. Lift one leg as high as you can and have a partner passively stretch your leg (pushing toward your torso) for about 15 seconds or so.
Then, lightly contract your leg by pushing against the resistance put forth by your partner. Hold this isometric contraction for about 8 seconds. You don’t need to exert a lot of force here. All we want is about 10% force activation from your hamstring.
After that, have your partner perform another 15 second passive stretch. You can repeat this (1st passive stretch, isometric contraction, and 2nd passive stretch, 2nd isometric contraction) as many times as you feel is needed to acquire your desired results.
Pnf stretching routine exercises for the hip flexors
The hip flexors are another common area where people experience muscle tightness. This is caused mainly in part due to the fact that most jobs have their employees stuck at a desk all day, unable to stretch their muscles with simple walking.
This not only causes muscle imbalances, but also muscle tightness. Don’t worry though, there are pnf stretching routine exercises for the hip flexors that can combat this from occurring and worsening.
To begin, lay on your stomach with your arms in a comfortable position and your legs straight. Then, flex one of your leg’s hamstrings to a 90 degree angle.
Once you do this, have your partner pull your leg back toward your spine: One hand under your knee and the other hand on your lower back for support. Hold this for about 20 seconds.
Then, lightly contract your hip flexor by resisting the force put upon it by your partner. Do this for about 8 seconds. Finally, do a second passive stretch with your partner (just like you did with the first passive stretch). Repeat as many times as needed: passives stretch, isometric contraction, passive stretch, isometric contraction, etc.).
Pnf stretching routine exercises for the glutes
Tight glutes may be a more uncommon area of muscle tightness, but it’s still an area people suffer from that hinders their day to day activities, or even athletic performance.
To use pnf stretching for the glutes, first lay on your back with both of your knees bent. Then, place one foot over the opposite leg’s knee (as if a gentlemen were crossing crossing his legs).
Once your ankle is resting on the other leg’s knee, have your partner push your legs back toward your torso. This is where your glutes will be stretched. You do use the same methods as described before.
You can do a 30 second passive stretch, 10 second static stretch, and a 30 second 2nd passive stretch. Feel free to play around with the times to see what best suits your needs. Switch legs to ensure that both glutes get stretched equally.
Pnf stretching routine exercises for the rotator cuffs
The rotator cuff is another common area where people experience tightness that can negatively effect their activities of daily living. Tightness in this area could be due to years of exercising without giving attention to the rotator cuff muscles, muscular imbalances, injuries, etc.
Regardless of your reason as to why you’re suffering from such an ailment, pnf streching has you covered. To do pnf stretching for the rotator cuffs, you can start by either standing or sitting.
Laterally raise one arm (the side with the tight rotator cuff) to where it’s parallel to your shoulders. Then, flex your elbow until you reach a 90 degree angle (as if you were waving to someone).
Have your partner passively stretch your rotator cuff back (behind you) by pushing on your wrist. Try this for about 15 seconds. Then, slightly contract your rotator cuff by resisting the force put upon it by your partner. Do this for about 8 seconds.
Finally, have your partner do a second passive stretch on your rotator cuff for another 15 seconds. Repeat as many times as you feel is necessary to allot you the results you desire.
Using these pnf stretching routine exercises should put you on the path to increased flexibility and range of motion in no time!