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To Stretch, or Not To Stretch: that is the question

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To Stretch, or Not To Stretch: that is the question

Old 02-25-19, 12:45 PM
  #101  
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Originally Posted by Trakhak View Post
Someone in this thread cited dogs and cats stretching as evidence/proof that humans should follow stretching protocols. If anyone has seen a cat or dog stretching for more than 5 to 10 seconds (as opposed to the various recommendations of stretching for 5 minutes/15 minutes/30 minutes), I'd be interested to hear about it.
Dogs and cats also lick their own behinds, but I don't think I need to incorporate that into my exercise regimen.
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Old 02-25-19, 01:23 PM
  #102  
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Originally Posted by CycleryNorth81 View Post
Do you stretch before, during or after a ride? Is it necessary?
I stretch in the morning, after waking up as a habit, so yes...regardless if its a day to ride.

S
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Old 03-02-19, 10:20 PM
  #103  
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Article on stretching. Foam rollers might be better for you.
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/a...aste-time.html
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Old 08-08-19, 04:16 PM
  #104  
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Originally Posted by bargeon View Post
Absolutely.
You could be as right as I am, or I could be as wrong as you are.😎
I could agree with you, but then we'd both be wrong.
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Old 08-08-19, 05:43 PM
  #105  
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Old 08-08-19, 06:37 PM
  #106  
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I usually stretch after a long hot thirsty ride.....to the back and bottom of the fridge where the beers are colder.
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Old 08-08-19, 06:52 PM
  #107  
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Originally Posted by CycleryNorth81 View Post
Do you stretch before, during or after a ride? Is it necessary?
I seriously need to work on my range of motion. Not just to improve my enjoyment of normal activities, if you take a hit, having good range of motion can make the difference between a bruise and a break. I've reached an age where I have to use it or lose it and that goes double for range. However, for me at least it's a completely separate issue from riding. I don't leap on the bike and go flat out with zero warm up but I don't do any stretching either, preferring to go easy until I feel things start to loosen up.
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Old 08-08-19, 06:55 PM
  #108  
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Moderate stretching “awakens” one’s muscles and gets blood flowing. Why would anyone consider that a detriment to better performance?

Last edited by BookFinder; 08-08-19 at 07:38 PM.
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Old 08-09-19, 01:33 AM
  #109  
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Stretching the way a cat or dog does (i.e., the way you do when you yawn, and for no more than 10 seconds or so) isn't likely to be a detriment to performance. More than that can be (by, e.g., damaging connective tissue to a greater or lesser degree), according to current studies.
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Old 08-09-19, 05:16 AM
  #110  
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Originally Posted by JoeKahno View Post
I seriously need to work on my range of motion. Not just to improve my enjoyment of normal activities, if you take a hit, having good range of motion can make the difference between a bruise and a break. I've reached an age where I have to use it or lose it and that goes double for range. However, for me at least it's a completely separate issue from riding. I don't leap on the bike and go flat out with zero warm up but I don't do any stretching either, preferring to go easy until I feel things start to loosen up.
Exactly! People confuse joint flexibility and range of motion. Stretching really doesn't do anything for range of motion, there's no substitute for actually using the joints.

I'm blessed by needing very little warm up, walking from the car to the gym is usually enough for me, and most of my rides involve a little bit of high-traffic stop and go riding at the beginning.

I think that a lot of this is people think they need some kind of ritual to make it clear they're serious about working out. Not that there's anything wrong with that.
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Old 08-09-19, 06:38 AM
  #111  
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OK, so I start stretching my hamstrings every day, for ten seconds. Within one week, I can touch my toes, and by the second week, I can rest my palms on the floor.

This is not increasing my "range of motion"? It's simply increasing "joint flexibility"? Aren't we talking about the same thing here? Is there something shameful about stretching that I am not aware of, that I should feel defensive towards? I really don't get the aversion, but different strokes ... I'm just gonna keep stretching because I'd be a cripple by now if I didn't.
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Old 08-09-19, 06:39 AM
  #112  
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To Stretch, or Not To Stretch: that is the question
Originally Posted by CycleryNorth81 View Post
Do you stretch before, during or after a ride? Is it necessary?
Originally Posted by Machka View Post
Definitely NOT before…
Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
No and no. If you like doing it, go ahead. I hate it, studies have shown it has nothing to do with cramping, and I think it's a waste of time.
Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
Exactly! People confuse joint flexibility and range of motion. Stretching really doesn't do anything for range of motion, there's no substitute for actually using the joints.

I'm blessed by needing very little warm up, walking from the car to the gym is usually enough for me, and most of my rides involve a little bit of high-traffic stop and go riding at the beginning.

I think that a lot of this is people think they need some kind of ritual to make it clear they're serious about working out. Not that there's anything wrong with that.
I have posted that warm-up riding is my way to “using (loosening up) the joints.”
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
Originally Posted by bruce19 View Post
How do you warm up?

I usually just spin without putting a load on my legs for a couple miles. I can feel when I'm ready to put more of a load on my legs.
I had previously replied last year to this thread on the Road Cycling Forum, “Pre & post warm-up warmdown.I have tried to “quantify” my answer (distance and intensity):
Originally Posted by boshk View Post
How much if any do you do before and after a ride?

..A ride where you need to shower afterwards...
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
For me, that’s a ride of minimum of ten miles, and my commute is a minimum of14 miles. I only warm up, and then ride at cruising pace to the end.

When I first started a training schedule for a century, I noted at what mile I spontaneously realized I felt completely warmed up, i.e. I did not consciously look for it, and it usually occurred at about 6 miles. My basic riding routine is:
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
...last year I developed for myself my"Time-restricted, Personally Ambitious, but Non-competitive CyclistTraining Routine,"…based on Relative Perceived Exertion (RPE).”
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
...I use the semi-quantitative, standardized, but personally relavant system of Borg’s Relative Perceived Exertion (RPE)

https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutriti...ce/borg-scale/
with my own particular adaptation.
...The RPE scale ranges from 6 to17, with descriptions of the intensity. Multiply the RPE by 10 is the approximate heart rate. Jim's scale is the equivalent on a 0 to 100 scale, easier to think about…

My basic training is to ride at my RPE of 50% for six miles to warm up, then cruise at an RPE of 60%, and do intervals (on hills) at 70% [described as“hard”; 60% is“somewhat hard," and 80% is “very hard" (lactate threshold;breakpoint between hard but steady breathing and labored with gasping). 50% is "fairly light" (my usual happy-go-lucky pace without thinking about it)].

I try to change gears to maintain a cadence of about 85-90 rpm on flats and rolling hills, and about 60 to 80 rpm on harder hills, to maintain my RPE. Shift up to higher gears as the cadence rises, and shift down as the RPE increases.
Originally Posted by az_cyclist View Post
I just pedal comfortably for a few miles. To meet club rides now it is fairly easy, as it is 6 or 7 miles (depending on which club) and is a 1% downhill.

Last edited by Jim from Boston; 08-09-19 at 07:03 AM.
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Old 08-09-19, 06:55 AM
  #113  
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Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
To Stretch, or Not To Stretch: that is the questionI have posted that warm-up riding is my way to “using (loosening up) the joints.”
It clicks in really fast for me. I usually feel "warmed up" after the first half mile or so.

I never have a sense that my joints are "tight", if anything feels like it's not ready, it's usually my calf muscles or my hamstrings, and that's very transient.

My biceps sometimes feel "reluctant" on the first couple lifts. None of this has to do with flexibility for me, it's more like the muscle isn't quite up to full strength.
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Old 08-09-19, 09:18 AM
  #114  
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Enough already! Anyone ever hear of yoga? Yoga relies heavily on flexibility training exercises — that’s a fancy name for stretching!

Moreover, any and every activity that elongates muscles, joints and connective tissues anywhere in your body is stretching. Everyone stretches.

More specifically, to the point of the OP’s question, anyone fit enough to do vigorous activity benefits from warming up and cooling down their muscles and joints and connective tissues beyond the thresholds that will be used during the most strenuous periods of activity. It’s really just common sense.

There are are lots of professional trainer guides available on how to do this safely, efficiently, quickly and easily.

Or don't do whatever it is you consider specific “stretching.” That won’t necessarily hurt you, but you will absolutely be missing a key piece of a well-rounded workout.

Either way, best of fortune and happy cycling!
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Old 08-09-19, 09:34 AM
  #115  
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Originally Posted by Sapperc View Post
Enough already! Anyone ever hear of yoga? Yoga relies heavily on flexibility training exercises — that’s a fancy name for stretching!

Moreover, any and every activity that elongates muscles, joints and connective tissues anywhere in your body is stretching. Everyone stretches.

More specifically, to the point of the OP’s question, anyone fit enough to do vigorous activity benefits from warming up and cooling down their muscles and joints and connective tissues beyond the thresholds that will be used during the most strenuous periods of activity. It’s really just common sense.

There are are lots of professional trainer guides available on how to do this safely, efficiently, quickly and easily.

Or don't do whatever it is you consider specific “stretching.” That won’t necessarily hurt you, but you will absolutely be missing a key piece of a well-rounded workout.

Either way, best of fortune and happy cycling!
Yeah, no. I'm not "missing" anything. In my younger days, I was essentially forced to do stretches, and they never made anything better. I also find them quite unpleasant. As a result, I have no interest in yoga, so I'm not sure what your point is there.

Saying "It's really just common sense" to people who have tried something and found it useless or worse is pretty silly. There's no evidence that what you assert is true, and frankly, when you put it that way, it's a rather stupid-sounding assertion. Why would you "warm up... beyond the thresholds that will be used during the most strenuous periods of activity"? That's the opposite of warming up--you're asking more of a "cold" muscle or joint than you will when it's warm. "Common sense" in this context just means you believe it, and you've just assumed everyone else believes it too. To me, it just sounds like a recipe for injury.

Your post is a rather passive/aggressive way of telling people you know what's better for them than they do. Frankly, you're just wrong.
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Old 08-09-19, 10:36 AM
  #116  
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Originally Posted by Lemond1985 View Post
I'm just gonna keep stretching because I'd be a cripple by now if I didn't.
I'd curl up as hard and tightly wound as a golf ball if I didn't stretch.


-Tim-
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Old 08-09-19, 10:42 AM
  #117  
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Before, during or after a ride, no.
But I will do some minor stretching at night, just while watching tv.
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Old 08-09-19, 11:06 AM
  #118  
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Last time for this one--if you find that stretching helps you, I'm not going to tell you it doesn't and you should keep doing it if it works for you. Just stop telling me or others that we should do it because it works for you. Muscle elasticity is a genetically determined trait, and it varies like crazy. You don't have any special knowledge that lets you know what should or shouldn't work well for someone else.

BTW, I just figured out what my stretching activity is-it's called standing on the pedals.
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Old 08-09-19, 11:49 AM
  #119  
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Has anyone tried PNF stretching?

https://humankinetics.me/2018/04/25/...nf-stretching/

https://www.healthline.com/health/fi...pnf-techniques

I had a book on it when it first became mainstream but never really followed through. It would be interesting to look at again.


-Tim-
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Old 08-09-19, 01:38 PM
  #120  
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Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
"To Stretch, or Not To Stretch: that is the question."

I have posted that warm-up riding is my way to “using (loosening up) the joints.”
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
When I first started a training schedule for a century, I noted at what mile I spontaneously realized I felt completely warmed up, i.e. I did not consciously look for it, and it usually occurred at about 6 miles.

My basic riding routine is: to ride at my RPE [Relative Perceived Exertion] of 50% for six miles to warm up, 50% is "fairly light" (my usual happy-go-lucky pace without thinking about it)
Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
It clicks in really fast for me. I usually feel "warmed up" after the first half mile or so.
Originally Posted by Sapperc View Post
Enough already! Anyone ever hear of yoga? Yoga relies heavily on flexibility training exercises — that’s a fancy name for stretching!

Moreover, any and every activity that elongates muscles, joints and connective tissues anywhere in your body is stretching. Everyone stretches.

More specifically, to the point of the OP’s question, anyone fit enough to do vigorous activity benefits from warming up and cooling down their muscles and joints and connective tissues beyond the thresholds that will be used during the most strenuous periods of activity. It’s really just common sense.

There are are lots of professional trainer guides available on how to do this safely, efficiently, quickly and easily.

Or don't do whatever it is you consider specific “stretching.” That won’t necessarily hurt you, but you will absolutely be missing a key piece of a well-rounded workout.

Either way, best of fortune and happy cycling!
Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
Yeah, no. I'm not "missing" anything. In my younger days, I was essentially forced to do stretches, and they never made anything better. I also find them quite unpleasant. As a result, I have no interest in yoga, so I'm not sure what your point is there.

Saying "It's really just common sense" to people who have tried something and found it useless or worse is pretty silly. There's no evidence that what you assert is true, and frankly, when you put it that way, it's a rather stupid-sounding assertion.

Why would you "warm up... beyond the thresholds that will be used during the most strenuous periods of activity"? That's the opposite of warming up--you're asking more of a "cold" muscle or joint than you will when it's warm.

"Common sense" in this context just means you believe it, and you've just assumed everyone else believes it too. To me, it just sounds like a recipe for injury.

Your post is a rather passive/aggressive way of telling people you know what's better for them than they do. Frankly, you're just wrong.
I ‘ve previously posted about yoga and cycling:
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
I have been doing yoga almost daily for the past two years (2007-2009) along with year round cycling. In addition to balance and core strength, I find yoga helps with breathing and what I would describe as "energy flow." IMO, cycling improves my yoga more than the reverse.

This has been a good cycling summer and I've attained the most extremes in some postures, even more than when I did the same yoga over thirty years ago.
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
My understanding of overall physical fitness is that the four components are endurance, strength, flexibility, and balance. For me yoga incorporates flexibility and balance. For various periods of time I did yoga daily, and about six years ago I even could stand on my head.

My practice waned, including after a serious bike accident with a fractured sacrum and I didn’t take it up again until last month (2016).

I have found over the years it to be very effective for flexibility and balance though I don’t think it necessarily helps my cycling (endurance), but I think my cycling helps my yoga.

In my current practice, I do seem to be limited by my deformed sacrum.
Epilogue: One day in August 2016 I was doing a position that involved standing on one foot, and I had a sudden onset of excruciating foot pain. I thought I had a pathologic fracture, but X-rays showed nothing.
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
...In August, I developed plantar fasciitis, and couldn’t safely mount my bike for about a month. So I deteriorated for couple months…

Last edited by Jim from Boston; 08-10-19 at 04:55 AM.
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Old 08-10-19, 10:00 AM
  #121  
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Originally Posted by CycleryNorth81 View Post
To Stretch, or Not To Stretch: that is the question
Depends how far the rims breach the arches...



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Old 08-10-19, 10:43 AM
  #122  
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Sometimes... I have old injuries and artificial hip. Physical the****** recommend I stretch, so at home I do when I remember. I also stretch in the gym when the stretching area is open - they have bars 'n mats optimized for stretching. But whether it is riding a bike or lifting weights, I can't tell the difference between days I stretch and days I don't...
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Old 08-10-19, 04:11 PM
  #123  
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TL/DR

Doesn't one stretch whilst biking? My legs sure do.
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Old 08-10-19, 04:50 PM
  #124  
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lots of opinions, lots of links, meh

if you feel you need it, do it. If not don't do it. Decide for yourself. Stretch and ride, don't stretch and ride. Stretch after or not and note to yourself what works best

did the soldiers that stormed the beaches of Normandy stretch? I don't know but I doubt it. There are different ways to warm up
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Old 08-10-19, 06:09 PM
  #125  
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Originally Posted by Flip Flop Rider View Post
lots of opinions, lots of links, meh

if you feel you need it, do it. If not don't do it. Decide for yourself. Stretch and ride, don't stretch and ride. Stretch after or not and note to yourself what works best

did the soldiers that stormed the beaches of Normandy stretch? I don't know but I doubt it. There are different ways to warm up

Stretching and warming up are not the same thing.

Otherwise, I agree.


-Tim-
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