The Middle Splits Challenge

A week ago my beautiful bendy friend Ronnie broke the news to me – she lowered down into her first full flat middle split. She attributed her success to Fit & Bendy’s Bendy Body DVD, an active flexibility workout which I suggested to her. But it was just one last piece she was missing in a puzzle she was working on for a long while.

I was quite inspired by her and her success story, inspired to face my currently most inflexible aspect of my body, my own middle splits. I started off with what seems like 90 degrees, and slowly, very slowly didn’t get much better like I did with my front splits, pancake and backbends. I avoided dealing with them, and they weren’t a priority.

I asked Ronnie what routine should I do, and being the bendy goddess and sweetest person that she is, she shared a plan of action with me, one which I decided to take on as a challenge. I’ll no longer avoid my middle splits, I’ll actively put work in them for a month and see how I feel about them.

My plan is to do this 3 times a week. I already did this routine last week, and it seems to take half an hour, which is totally feasible for me.

The Routine

  1. Hip warm up – my glute strengthening hip flexor extending butt shaping routine
  2. Standing leg kick to the side
  3. Leg kicks while laying on the side
    1. Propped on the elbow
    2. Head on arm on the floor
    3. Prop back onto the elbow, bring knee to shoulder, grab the ankle and extend leg.
  4. Leg turnout – Standing on all four, extend a leg to the side.
    1. With toe on the ground, turn it in and out.
    2. In a turned out position, do leg lifts.
    3. In the air, turn it in and out.
  5. Standing/seating pike
  6. Butterfly pose
  7. Straddle stretches with feet on blocks
    1. Bend sideways to each leg.
    2. Fold towards on each leg.
    3. Fold forward into a pancake
  8. Pancake split
  9. Weighted reclined splits. Put ankle weights on and lay on the ground.
    1. Slowly open and close the legs
    2. Add resistance bands on each leg, hold them with the hands, put a block under the butt and resist the bands in pulses.
  10. Weighted wall splits. With the ankle weight still on, move butt to wall.
    1. Lay on back
    2. Prop up onto the elbows
    3. Prop up on the hands and push chest to wall
    4. Slowly slide feet down and get to a seated position
    5. Push chest to wall again
  11. Descend to middle split using a pole
    1. Stand face to pole, turn feet out and start sliding them out flexed in stright line.
    2. Keep crouch close to pole and slide until legs start to go forward into a straddle.
    3. Stop and point toes and hold.
  12. Frog and half frog
  13. Middle split

 

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