Weekly Stretches By Michele Bendy 3!

Splits, splits and more splits! This weeks focus is yes SPLITS. The importance of splits is to stretch the hamstrings, back of thighs, hip flexor and overall the whole leg. We can’t express enough how stretching regularly can prevent injury, also improve posture, technique, speed up metabolism, improve circulation and give you the power you need as a dancer. Please feel free to comment for Michele Bendy to reply to you with insight and tips.

Begin with Down dog Split

Begin with Down dog Split

Down Dog Split

Find your downward facing dog. Lift the right leg up keeping the hips leveled. Activate the leg by either flexing the foot or pointing the toes.

Standing Split
Standing split

From your Down Dog Split bring the right foot fwd meet the right thumb. Balance on your right leg elevating your left leg keeping the hips leveled flex the foot or point your toes. Straighten the right leg as much as you can and engage the Quad. If you are having difficulty balancing or straightening the leg use blocks. If possible grab a hold of your right ankle with your right hand drawing the chin towards your shin. As your drive yourself in lift the left leg higher.

Half Split
Half split

From your Standing Split lower into a low lunge left knee resting on the floor. Extend the right leg and flex the right foot. Slide your heel back plugging the thigh bone into the hips socket so that the hips are squared.

Full Split
Full Split

From your half split start to extend the legs without losing the alignment of the hips. If you do not have a full split use blocks for balance. Get the shoulders over the hips. Flex the foot and hold for 10 seconds…Keep the leg engaged and point the toes and hold for another 10 seconds. Flex the foot and arms up if possible. If you do have a full split come off the floor a few inches bring awareness to your hips and lift arms over head. This will help to strengthen in hips and legs.

Quote from the expert Michele Bendy
Want to get hardcore with it then it’s all about the splits.

Weekly Stretches by Michele Bendy 2!

Reference for the DownDog Position MICHELE BENDY

Reference for the DownDog Position MICHELE BENDY

Warm up

Starting seated, windshield wiping the leg with feet hip width apart. Swaying the legs side to side at center seated with feet flat on the ground, right ankle resting slightly above left knee flexing right foot and again swaying side to side. Bring the shin in towards the chest and repeat on the other side.

Indio In Pigeon.  Dynamic Rockers Crew

Indio In Pigeon. Dynamic Rockers Crew

Pigeon pose

Go into down dog turn the right hip open and square the hips, sweep the knee forward heel towards the groin going into pigeon. Adjust the left leg internally rotating the left thigh to square the hips. If you are flexible you may pull the foot away from the groin. Flex the right foot to protect the knee. Now if there is discomfort of the knee or issues with the knee you may do this pose on your back. Lay on your back have the ankle rest slightly flexing the right foot above your left knee to form the number 4. Have the hands rest behind the left thigh drawing the left knee in, make sure to keep the seat and hips resting on the floor. Hold pigeon for at least 1 minute
go back to down dog lift the right leg shake the leg and repeat on the other side

Michele Bendy in Double Pigeon

Michele Bendy in Double Pigeon

Double pigeon

Double pigeon or knee to ankle pose. Sit on the floor before getting into double pigeon windshield wipe the legs sway side to side like we do above. Start off with legs crossed Indian style with the left leg over the right. Slide the left ankle outside the right knee, for more of a challenge if the dancer is flexible in the hips you can slide your right shin forward directly above the left so that shins are parallel to each other. Otherwise keep the right heel close to the left hip, lengthen through the crown of your head. Flex your feet both right and left, if you have shins stacked on top of each other fold over your legs otherwise maintain the lengthen in your spine with spine perpendicular to the floor.

Melanie Aguirre In Outer Hip Stretch

Melanie Aguirre In Outer Hip Stretch

Outer hip Stretch

Stay in double pigeon and sliding left leg to the right stacking left knee over right. If the dancer is open/flexible slide right shin forward creating a straight line from right ankle to knee to left ankle. Fold over legs and hold for 1 minute, come out of pose and windshield wipe the legs.

Quote from the expert
When the hips are tight so are legs and so is the back. This will help GREATLY for all splits.

Weekly Stretches by Michele Bendy 1!

If you are reading this blog and you’re a dancer we like to ask you a question. Are you stretching regularly? Actually are you stretching daily? Yoga/Stretch expert Michele Medina will be guiding the dance community in weekly stretches to prevent injuries, becoming flexible with fast results and tips on how to condition your body for those show stopper moves.

This week we will begin with wall lunges, utilizing the wall will provide support, getting a deeper stretch and locking in the alignment. These three stretches focuses on opening the hips for results in splits and even back bends.

90 Degrees
90 Degree

Start with right leg forward left knee on the floor, with shin pressing against wall. Make sure right leg is forming a 90 Degree angle, thigh parallel to the floor and shin perpendicular to the floor. Bring the rib cage in, tilt pelvis forward. Hold for at least 30 seconds and change legs.

Hip Flexor
Hip Flexor Stretch

Same as the 90 degree except now you will extend public bone. Walk right leg forward so that knee is not going beyond the toes. There is a slight back bend, pull abdominal muscles in towards the spine.

Split
Split

Same as above extend front leg flex foot and engage quads so you give hips support. Plug in thighbone into hip socket and breath.

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Quote from the expert Michele Bendy

“It depends on the dancer, I recommend stretching 1 hour, two or three times a week but if you want serious results it’s a hour to two at minimum a day. The more you commit the more you will get bendy bendy!”