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26 June 2015 3 Training, Stretching
Mobility - Stretching – Foam rolling …So what’s the difference?

It could confuse anyone but the great debate about how we should warm up and cool down has always differed over the years. A lot of people associate a warm with a 5min bike ride or jog on the treadmill with a bit of static stretching as a warm before a workout . This may have been the case some time ago but research and science begs to differ.

Static stretching is now known that before a workout it actually decreases muscle proprioception and power. Of course this explains why you still only squat 60kg at a 90 degree angle and not 160kg at full range like an Olympic weight lifter. Well… let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves. Just saying this might not be the reason why you’re not in the Olympics but maybe this tells us that static stretching should be kept at the end of our workouts and not at the beginning for best results. 

So what needs to be done before a workout is to increase muscle proprioception and power in our muscles. Could mobility be the answer? Meaning the ability to take a joint through a full range of movement by using the muscle that produces the movement to move it easily and freely.

These days equipment such as spikey balls and foam rollers all aid in self massage helping us mobilise our joints and release tight muscles. Foam rolling helps release tight muscles so our joints can move more freely. With our joints moving more freely this will enable us to loosen the tight ones and activate the weaker muscles. Maybe then doing a pre activation exercise for the weaker muscle group.  Therefore when we go to perform that exercise eg a squat, we get the most benefit from that exercise.

 Remember exercise should be fun and challenging throughout our life with injuries kept at a minimum no matter how old we think we are. Taking time to mobilise and stretch will keep us moving with less aches and pain for a lot longer. Train safe.

Have fun guys  


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