By Dr. Steve Gangemi

In this 4 part SockDoc series, you’ll learn the advantages of movement, the myths of flexibility, the confusion over stretching, and the perils of being misinformed about such a controversial topic. What truly makes you flexible? Should you ever stretch?

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PART I: Move With a Purpose: Stop Mindless Stretching – Stretching for Flexibility, or Not

  • Learn what stretching really is – or isn’t. Does anyone really know?
  • Think about why you actually need to stretch; what’s the purpose?
  • Flexibility is what’s important. That’s not stretching.

It has been almost five years since I first posted my somewhat controversial “Stop Stretching!” article on the Sock Doc website (or Soc Doc as many continue to write). My views regarding stretching haven’t changed much but my knowledge and experience around body movement, mobility, stretching and flexibility have undergone some drastic changes over these years. Stretching for flexibility is still something that many athletes practice daily hoping it will improve their performance and reduce their chances of become injured.

In 2011, when I wrote “Stop Stretching!” I was still racing triathlons and finishing up a fifteen year Ironman career. I believed and still do believe, that traditional stretching for athletes, and particularly endurance athletes, is a waste of time, as there are typically more risks than reward obtained from such practice. Then, in the summer of 2011 I made a rather quick transition away from triathlons into the world of movement. Primarily, I became heavily involved with MovNat, as most of you are or should be familiar with. Over time, I have become involved with various other programs and movement philosophies such as but not limited to parkour, Ido Portal Method, and Original Strength.

Read the full article here

PART II: Move With a Purpose: Stop Mindless Stretching – Flexibility and Fascia

  • Flexibility is more than just movement and way more than just stretching.
  • Sitting might slowly kill you but so will other aspects of life affecting your nervous system.
  • Fascia! And Gel fascia – gooey stuff most have never heard of.
  • Human variations – maybe you don’t bend that way.

PART III: Move With a Purpose: Stop Mindless Stretching – Movement, Mobility, and Yoga

  • Movement is important, stretching is not.
  • Mobility is key – but what really is it?
  • Yoga? What about yoga? Yoga is stretching? No, it’s not.

PART IV: Move With a Purpose: Stop Mindless Stretching – Warm-up, Cool-down, Injury Treatment, and a Bozo Prevention Strategy

  • Should you stretch before or after a workout routine?
  • Should you stretch an injury? Should you stretch to prevent an injury?
  • How do you get flexible and still look cool but not become a Bozo?

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Dr. Steve Gangemi
Dr. Steve Gangemi, aka SockDoc, practices holistic health care in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. He uses various methods which bring together functional neurology, biochemistry, acupressure meridian therapies, applied kinesiology, dietary and lifestyle-modification methods to get a person healthy again. Gangemi has a doctorate degree in chiropractic and bachelor degree in nutrition.