You’re never too old to learn how to do the splits. Splits increase your flexibility and improve your balance and strength, which naturally wear with age. They’re great for your joint health and reduce your risk of injury from day to day tasks. Once your splits start improving, you’ll notice improvements in other areas too. You’ll increase your range of motion, encourage healthy circulation and strengthen your patience and perseverance. If you feel like doing the splits is an impossible endeavor, we’re here to prove you wrong. Here are 10 tips and stretches you can do to reach your goal!
How to Do The Splits
1. 8 Min Stretch for Splits – How to Get Your Front Splits/No Equipment | Pamela Reif
This 8 minute routine takes you through various stretches that will help you achieve the front splits. They’re fully targeted on hip mobility, hamstring and thigh flexibility, all of which are necessary to be able to do the front splits. You’ll do stretches like low lunges, hamstring stretches and pigeon pose, and don’t forget to put a yoga mat down to cushion you.
2. Stretch: Lunge to Hip Flexor
Start in a lunge, with your hands on either side of your front foot. Lower your hips and press through your back heel. Hold for 20 seconds and repeat 2 to 3 times. From the lunge position, drop your back knee to the ground, and press forward slightly to stretch out your hips. Hold for 20 seconds and repeat 2 to 3 times. Then, from the low lunge position, lift your back toes off the floor, and grab your foot with your arm on the same side. Gently pull your heel toward your bum while pressing down into your hips. Hold for 20 seconds and repeat 2 to 3 times. Repeat on other side.
3. Make Sure to Warm Up
Before dropping down to the ground and into the splits, be sure to do a proper warm up to build up heat and mobility. This could be some light yoga, or a brisk walk paired with stretches like low lunges, the butterfly pose and standing forward fold pose. When your muscles are cold, they’re stiff and not able to elongate. Warming up increases blood flow to your muscles and is key to preventing injuries during the splits.
4. 7 Middle Splits Stretches for Flexibility | Daniela Suarez
This is an amazing stretching routine to help you do your middle splits. It’s just 7 minutes long and consists of stretches like the one leg frog, wall wide legs and deep squat. These stretches will make your muscles more relaxed and set you up for success with your middle splits. You’ll need a throw cushion for most of these stretches.
5. Engage Your Core
When doing the front or side splits, it’s super important to engage your core muscles throughout the entire movement. This will help stabilize your upper body and reduce the risk of injury to your lower back. The splits are meant to be performed slow and in control- avoid bouncing or flopping over and keep your core as strong as possible!
6. Invest in a Yoga Mat
If you don’t have a yoga or exercise mat at home, it’s time to invest in one, especially if you’re going to be doing lots of stretching and eventually, the splits! Having a yoga mat is key for stretching routines as it alleviates stress on pressure points such as your joints, hips, hands and knees. This non-slip mat will keep you steady and balanced while you do your stretches.
7. 15 Min Stretch for Splits (Front Splits Flexibility Routine) | MadFit
This stretching routine is excellent for beginners to help you on your journey to the front splits. A lot of it is focused on hamstrings and hips, as those are usually the tightest spots that prevent us from reaching our full flexibility. Make sure to include this routine daily if you want to be able to do the splits! It’s going to take time and dedication, but you can do it!
8. Stretch: Pigeon Pose
The pigeon pose is a great stretch if you want to do the splits as it increases flexibility in the hip flexors, which is key for the front splits. It also stretches the hamstring and the groin, so is really one of the best stretches you can do in your splits journey.
From a tabletop position, bend your right knee and bring your leg forward until your knee is just behind your right wrist. Then slide the right foot under the left side of your body. Extend your left leg completely behind you. Try to keep your back leg straight and your hips squared off. Your right knee should be under your right armpit and your left knee should be directly under your left hip. Hold for 30 seconds and repeat on the other side.
9. Consistency is Key
If you really want to be able to do the splits, you have to be consistent with your stretching. Flexibility requires persistence and patience. Even if you feel like you’re super inflexible and so far from being able to do the splits, continuing to stretch and practice your splits on a regular basis is the best way to get you there faster.
10. Avoid Overstretching
In each stretch you do, go as low as possible, but make sure you don’t have any pain. You should feel a good intense stretch, but it should never hurt you. Overstretching can result in aches and soreness and can also lead to an injury, like a strain or sprain. It can be counterproductive to your fitness goals, so make sure not to overstretch.
If being able to do the splits is one of your flexibility and fitness goals, use these tips and stretches will help you get there faster!
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