Skateboarding stretching exercises – what after the ride?
Stretching is a very important part of any physical activity. Skateboarding is difficult by itself since it requires a lot of direction changes, jumps, adjustments, and rotation. Skateboarding stretching exercises are something any skateboarder, regular or pro, should know.
After the training session was successful, you need to work hard to return the length of your muscles in the previous state. Stretching is also important for recovery and better circulation. It also decreases the chances of injury and lengthens the career of the skateboarder. You can read more about benefits of stretching here.
Passive stretching is the type of stretching which is done with the partner of with a force which is located out of the system (for example, a stretching device). Passive skateboarding stretching exercises are vital if you want your career last longer. Many athletes neglect stretching, but if you want to reach pro level, this is a must!
Skateboarding stretching exercises – how to stretch when you have a partner
More than 95% of skateboarders just change their clothes and go when they finish the ride. Many skateboarders even ride home, but they don’t stretch. They were having difficult activity, their muscles are burning, but they do nothing to prevent their body!
To be able to understand what muscles are the most important during skateboarding, read this paragraph carefully.
During skateboarding, the biggest pressure is on lower back muscles, hamstrings, quads, glutes, calves, and adductors. Skateboarding stretching exercises should focus on these muscle groups, while other groups could be considered too. Of course, there is no need to stretch your arms, unless you do handstands and other extremely difficult tricks like Bob Burnquist do whole his life.
Skateboarding stretching exercises should start from lower back and glutes, and finish on calves. Just follow the rule of gravity. You have many more options when you have a partner. When you have a mat too, your body will be so grateful to you! Remember, each stretch should be held for at least 20 seconds if you want a maximum result. Try to repeat each exercise (or each leg) two or three times.
Now let’s go to the passive skateboarding stretching exercises!
Lower back stretch
Lay on your back and flex your legs. A partner stands with his legs wide and puts your legs on his chest, pushing his weight downstairs, towards the ground. The partner should grab your ankles for more stability.
Try to maintain this position for at least 20-30 seconds, and repeat. This is the most important of all passive stretching skateboarding exercises. You mustn’t forget this one, especially if you were jumping or performed fence, wall, or sliding tricks over and over during your ride!
Hamstring is the next muscle which should be properly treated. There are two very good exercises for this muscle. Did you know that hamstring stretch with flexed and extended leg hits different areas of your hamstring muscle? And the tension is different – this is what your body needs after the ride!
Semi-flexed hamstring stretch
One leg remains extended, while the other one is flexed. Kneel above your partner, pressing the shin of his lower leg with your shin. Grab the heel of his leg in the air.
Push the heel towards the partner. When you reached the maximum amplitude, maintain the position for at least 20 seconds, then change legs. Try not to go the side, and keep the leg flexed. You will isolate biceps femoris, which is the most important muscle in your hamstrings.
Hamstring stretch with extended leg
Everything remains the same when it comes to the position of the person who performs the stretch. But the partner needs to keep his leg fully extended. Grab the heel and make sure the knee remains flat. If the knee is flexed, the exercise is not done properly.
The main difference between this one and the previous one is muscle group activation. While both exercises affect hamstring muscles, this exercise includes semitendinosus and semimembranosus muscle more. It is very suitable if you have had an extremely hard training session full of basic movements.
Gluteus is the muscle which is active during each skateboarding motion. It really doesn’t matter what you do. You cannot do any skateboarding exercise without activating this muscle! The next two are probably the most important skateboarding stretching exercises. Glutes must handle the biggest tension of all muscles during your ride!
Laying glute stretch
Put your shin on the exerciser’s shin, preventing his lower leg from moving. Place one arm on the knee, while another arm is put on the toes. Rotate the toes to the inside. Push your chest forward, pressing the knee to the inside. When the maximum amplitude is reached, maintain the position for a period of time.
This is one of the most effective skateboarding stretching exercises for recovery after the ride. You can easily control the force which is applied to the glute muscles.
Kneeling gluteus stretch
The exerciser should put his legs in figure four position. Kneel and grab his heel, placing his foot on your chest. Grab his knee with your hand. Pull his knee towards yourself, while at the same time you pressure his foot by your chest in the opposite direction. Hold this position and then change legs.
It is an excellent exercise after a ride through the skateboarding park. Don’t just ride and forget this exercise, this about your skateboarding career, your body!
Sometimes it is necessary to combine quadriceps and tibialis anterior. Do you know how shins can hurt when you run 110m hurdles race, or when you try triple jump? Exact the same thing happens during the ride, especially if you jump and perform basic tricks. Do you even know how many times you jump? These exercises will relax your muscles!
Front leg stretcher
This exercise stretches your quads and tibialis anterior at the same time. The exerciser flexes one knee, while the other one remains straight. Grab the foot, pushing it forward. When the leg touches glutes, hold the position.
Three heights quadriceps stretch
This is the best exercise to relax your quads. The grab and the movement are basically the same, with slight differences – second and third time. Just grab the ankle of the exerciser instead of his foot.
For the second time, put your knee under the exerciser’s thigh, and flex the leg. You will get a better angle and efficiency to stretch the quad muscle. For the third time, kneel and put the exerciser’s thigh on your knee. You will get more efficient way to stretch the quads.
The next important muscle group is adductors. Unlike quads, hamstrings, and glutes, adductors aren’t active in every movement. But it is an important part of skateboarding stretching exercises cause you have movements where you need an amplitude.
Kneeling light slide adductor stretch
The exerciser’s leg must remain straight at all costs. Kneel on his leg, pressing his shin with your shin, and placing your arm on his hip. Slowly improve the amplitude between his legs, pushing his leg with your other shin. Hold when the maximum amplitude is reached. This is the most dangerous among skateboarding stretching exercises, and extreme caution is required if you want to avoid injury.
The exerciser lays on his back, with his legs flexed and widespread, feet touching each other. Kneel in front of the exerciser and put your arms on his knees. Push both knees down simultaneously and symmetrically. When the maximum amplitude is reached, hold the position.
Try to perform this exercise as slow as possible. One leg is usually more stretched than another one, so, for example, a right knee might go more down than the left knee. You must be warned and prevent this from happening.
When you perform a lot of ollies, your calf muscles will burn. However, there is an outstanding way of stretching it.
Here is the video of the exercise, take a look at 4:03. You have two very good exercises to ease up your calf muscles. Despite these are primarily soccer exercises, it might be used for skateboarding too. Remember, calf muscles are the most vulnerable when you perform free ride or a street skateboarding. If you go vert, calf muscles will not be that much endangered, and stretching is not necessary.
The groin is the last region of your body suitable for skateboarding stretching exercises. This area rarely works, unless you perform extremely dangerous and attractive skateboarding tricks. However, it is not a bad choice after all. Perform at least one set.
Piriformis is a small groin muscle. It is active when you cross your legs or perform adduction. The exerciser should cross the legs. The toes of one leg should be placed on the calf of another leg. Put your arm on the exerciser’s hip, and push his legs down with another arm. Hold the position at the bottom.