Overcoming tension?

I'm really struggling with the mobility and flexibility aspects of your programs. It seems like I just don't have the range of motion you guys demo in the videos. Am I doomed to the life of a plank? How can I make progress?


No, you're not doomed. It just takes time - think how many years it took you to get yourself in this state! ;)

A good reminder is to think of "moving to the tension, not through the tension."

Jamming into a movement is counter-productive, because your body interprets that as a threat and seizes up. You can't force range of motion or compensatory release. The goal, rather, is to shave off a bit more tension each day. To gradually "reset" the limit of where your body says "waaaait a minute! I don't bend that way!"

Your breath is one of the best tools in your arsenal here. Watch it closely. If you find yourself gasping, holding your breath, or contorting your face, you're pushing too far. Note the cue and back off slightly.

If you find yourself just breathing normally, as though you're taking a gentle walk in the park, you haven't hit your "training zone". You're demonstrating mastery of your current state by resting in the position, but you're not getting a training effect.

If you find yourself focusing on the exhale – exhaling as you press into the pose, backing off slightly and inhaling, then exhaling and driving again – you're probably right in the zone where you'll get full benefit from the exercise. That point where you have to focus on the exhale is the range you want to work in.

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