Stretching for Tae Kwon Do
In order to perform to the best of your ability during any workout of sporting event it is best to do a five minute warm-up followed by dynamic stretching. Several studies have shown that athletes perform best when they have warmed up and done dynamic stretches prior to performing. Following the workout or sporting event you can do static stretching.
Dynamic stretches are movements that are similar to the movements that your body will be doing. You should do dynamic movements for all the joints and muscles that will be used. Dynamic stretches are held for only 1-2 seconds and should be repeated 8-12 times for each joint or muscle. Dynamic stretches done properly before exercising or performing will improve your flexibility, balance, coordination and strength.
These stretches will help improve your range of motion, help to prevent injuries and reduce pain. Static stretching is a stretch that you hold for 10-30 seconds or more.After your workout or in the evenings you should do static stretches.
Below is an example of a dynamic stretch routine to use prior to taking a Tae Kwon Do class.
Side Neck Rotation
Slowly move head left until you feel tension, slowly move back to center and then move to right side and back. Repeat at least 8 times on each side.
Benefit - You will improve your range of motion in your neck.
This motion is used for all spins.
Progressive Arm circles
Then do medium size circles, followed by largest circles. Start with arms out doing 5 circles forward and then back.
Used for all hand techniques and blocking.
Benefit - will improve shoulder mobility.
Start with elbows at 90 degree angle make loose fists, slowly rotate your fists inward 10-12 times and then reverse for 10-12 times.
Benefit - will improve blood flow to area and improve range of motion. This motion is used for all hand techniques and blocks (the twisting motion at the end).