New Years’ resolutions can be fun. Whether last year was fantastic or you can’t wait to kick 2014 in the backside as it heads out the door, it is great to image the new and exciting things you want to learn and do in the coming twelve months. The problem is, after a month or two (or sometimes a week or two) it is easy to slide back into old habits. Life gets hectic, your body gets tired, and by the middle of the year you have let go of all

  When trying to design your training regimen, sometimes its difficult to know where to begin. How many days per week? How long? What exercises do you do on which days? This is especially true if you cross-train or practice more than one discipline. Flexibility may be only one of your fitness goals. How do you best balance all of the things you want to learn to optimize your body’s response to your practice? One tool has made all the difference for me and many other the circus performers, dancers, aerialists, fitness nuts, and

  It is great to have goals in your training, it gives us motivation and that glorious feeling of satisfaction whenever we reach one. There is a dark side, however, to the ambition that comes when the drive to get better overshadows the training process. In my coaching, I often hear concern from men and women of all ages that they are not progressing quickly enough, and that they are struggling. The desired results are not coming as easily as they had hoped, or they are coping with pain and injury. These

  In my experience, adults who would like to become more flexible excel when we approach our training with a devotion to the process rather than as a slave to the results. The ideal approach to training flexibility is to use a variety of stretching techniques. Because an over emphasis on passive stretching can leave gaps in your development it is important to have other options. If you are encountering obstacles—pain, injury, poor alignment, weakness, feeling stuck—it may be time to try a new approach. The more tools you have at your disposal

  Passive static stretching does nothing to stabilize the joints, build strength, or comfort the nervous system. That is why any stretching regimen needs to branch out from the traditional passive static stretches to include resistance, active, and slow dynamic stretches. Sitting in splits is fine, but it is of limited usefulness in flexibility training for adults. It cannot be the sum total of your flexibility training because passive static stretching—allowing and external force like a strap, another human, or gravity to push as you try to relax into a stretch—is of limited