How to Do the Pretzel Stretch
To do the pretzel stretch, you need to elevate one leg straight into the air and then wrap the arm on the same side around the outside of your thigh. Then, you need to connect your hands behind your back to help hold the leg in place, all while balancing on one leg. A pretzel stretch can be a challenge to get into, even if you are flexible. However, you can make getting into the pretzel stretch much easier by doing a good warmup and then trying one (or more) strategies for getting into the stretch.
Do some split kicks.Split kicks will help to warm up your muscles and loosen up your hamstrings. Focusing on one side at a time, kick your leg up into the air straight in front of you and moving in towards your face.
- Continue to kick your leg in this motion for about one minute and then switch to the other side.
Kick to the side for t-kicks.Next, you will need to stretch out the muscles in your inner thighs. Begin kicking one leg out to the side and up towards your ear on that side. Then, switch to the other side.
- Repeat this motion for about one minute on each side.
Stretch in a split position.After you have warmed up your muscles, get down on the ground and do a split. If you cannot get into a full split position yet, then just get as close as you can. To do a split, put one leg out in front of you and the other behind you. If you can, then lean forward towards your toe for an extra deep stretch.
- Hold the stretch for about one minute on each side.
- Repeat the stretch on your other side by switching the positions of your legs.
- Do not bounce when you stretch. Just hold the position. If the stretch feel painful or uncomfortable, then reduce the stretch until the pain goes away.
Do heel stretches.Stand up again and position yourself next to a wall or bar. Then, lift one leg into the air in front of you. Grab your foot with one or both hands. If you need to, then you may also place one hand on the wall or bar to help steady yourself.
- Hold this stretch for about one minute on each side.
Try a bow and arrow stretch.The bow and arrow stretch can make it easier for you to get into the pretzel stretch. To do the bow and arrow stretch, lift your left leg into the air so that it is up near your ear. Grab your foot with your right hand to hold it in place. Then, place your left arm in front of your left thigh and extend it straight out. Your body should resemble a bow and arrow when you are in this position.
- Hold the stretch for about one minute.
- Do the same stretch on your right leg as well.
Using the Side Tuck
Pull your left thigh into the side of your body.From a standing position, lift up your left thigh so that it is close to the side of your body. Pull it in as close to your body as you comfortably can.
- If this position or any other position feels uncomfortable, then reduce the stretch or get out of the stretch right away. Otherwise you may injure yourself.
Place your left arm under your knee.Steady yourself if you need to. Then, take your left arm and bring it around the front of your thigh and then loop it under your knee. Reach towards your back with your left arm.
Grasp your hands behind your back.Put your right arm behind your back and grab your left hand with your right hand. Keep your hands tightly clasped behind your back.
- If you cannot grasp hands, then try using a towel. Hold the towel in your left hand and then grab the towel with your right hand. You can also use a towel to help you reach your toes if you are not yet flexible enough to do so.
Extend your leg.Lift your left foot into the air so that your left leg is as straight as possible. Then point your toe out and hold the pose.
- If you can’t fully extend your leg in the beginning, that is fine! Just keep working on improving your flexibility and you will get there.
Moving from Heel Stretch to Pretzel
Grab your foot with the opposite hand.Get into a heel stretch position so that you are holding your left foot with your left hand. Then, reach up with your right hand and grab your foot with your right hand also.
Pull your leg closer to your ear.Use both hands to pull your leg in closer to your body, towards your ear. Your thigh should be pressing against your stomach.
Loop your arm behind your leg.Next, release your left hand but continue to hold onto your foot with your right hand. Take your left arm and loop it in front of your left leg. Press the back of your left leg with your left arm and reach towards your back with your left arm.
Release your foot and connect your hands.Steady yourself and then slowly release your left foot with your right hand. Reach around your right side with your right arm and grasp your left hand.
- Hold your position.
Using a Bar
Get into the captain's pose.If you cannot lift your leg straight into the air, then you can also try giving your leg a boost by starting out in the captain's pose. You will need to use a bar or countertop to get into the pose.
- Start by placing your left foot on a bar or high counter. Bend your left knee and lean in towards your left leg slightly.
Bring your left arm in front of your left thigh.Next, place your left arm in front of your left thigh and reach towards your back. Press your left arm against your left thigh to pull your leg in closer to your body.
Shift your weight.Start to slowly transition your body weight from the counter or bar to your right leg. You may need to push off slightly, but be careful. Get your balance before you do anything else.
Grasp your hands behind you.When you feel steady enough, reach your right arm behind your back and grasp your left hand with your right hand. Steady yourself as needed. Continue to balance on one leg with your left thigh pressed against your body.
Extend your leg.When you feel ready, begin to extend your left leg until it straight. Make sure that your toe is pointed.
- Hold this position for as long as you like.
Using Shin Tuck
Tuck your left shin into your chest.Another way to get into a pretzel stretch is to tuck your shin into your body and then transition from that pose. Start by bending your left leg and pulling your shin in towards your stomach. Wrap your arms around your shin and pull it in gently to deepen the stretch.
- Next, wrap your arms under your hamstring to deepen the stretch even more. Continue to hold your thigh close to your body and steady yourself as needed.
Release your arms.Let go of your thigh with your left arm, but continue to hold your thigh with your right arm. Place your left arm under your left thigh and reach towards your back. When you feel ready, release your right arm as well and reach back towards your left arm.
- Grasp your hands behind you and hold.
Straighten your leg.Your left arm should keep your left thigh pressed against your body. When you feel ready, you can start to straighten your leg out. Point your toe upwards and continue to balance.
- Hold the pose.
Using Side Stretch
Grab your left foot with your right hand.Start by getting into a side stretch position, so that your left leg is extended straight up in the air along the left side of your body. Then, grab your left foot with your right hand and hold.
- Steady yourself if you need to.
Release your left arm in front of you.When you feel steady, release your left foot with your left hand. Continue to hold the foot with your right hand. Then, wrap your left arm in front of your left thigh and reach towards your back.
- Press your arm into your thigh to help hold your leg in place.
Let go of your foot and connect your hands.Next, release your left foot with your right hand and reach your arm around your right side. Grasp your left and right hands together to help hold the left leg in place.
- Point your toe and hold.
Using Bow and Arrow Stretch
Get into the bow and arrow stretch.Start by getting into a bow and arrow stretch position. Your left leg should be straight up in front of you and you should be holding your left foot with your right hand. Your left hand should be threaded through the gap between your body and leg so that it is in front of your left thigh.
- Hold this position.
Wrap your left arm around your left leg.Next, wrap your left arm around your thigh and reach towards your back. Press your left arm against your left thigh to help hold it in place.
Release your foot and grab left hand with your right hand.When you feel ready, let go of your left foot with your right hand. Then. Reach your right arm behind your body and use your left hand to grasp your right hand.
- Hold the pretzel stretch for as long as you like.
Using a T-Kick
Kick your left leg into the air.If you are quite flexible, then you should be able to get into a pretzel stretch using a t-kick. Start by kicking your left leg out to the side and up into the air a few times to get warmed up.
Grab onto your left foot with your left hand.When you feel ready, grasp your left foot with your left hand. Hold onto your left foot for a moment. Regain your balance if you need to.
Bring your left arm down and around your thigh.As soon as you have your balance, wrap your left arm in front of your left thigh and bring it around your body towards your back. Press your left arm into your left thigh to keep it in place.
Connect your hands behind your back.Next, reach your right arm around your right side towards your left hand. Connect your hands and point your toe upwards. Hold the stretch for as long as you want.
- If you have trouble with balance, then try finding a spot and focusing on it as your stand on one leg. This can help you to steady yourself as you transition from one position to the next and it will also help you to hold the pretzel pose for longer. You might also consider having someone spot you as you do this exercise to ensure that you do not fall over.
- Stretch every day to improve your flexibility.The pretzel stretch requires a high degree of flexibility, so you may need to work up to it. Include stretches in your daily routine to help you work towards this position.
- Do not push your body into a position that feels painful. If any of the positions leading up to or in the pretzel stretch position feel painful, then reduce the intensity of the stretch until it is no longer painful.
Video: Bretzel or Pretzel stretch by DC personal trainer
How to Travel with Dogs
How to Install a Slide Drawer in a Lipped Cabinet
How to Saute Potatoes
The Best Reason To Share A Kiss (Or More) Tonight
How to Get Rid of Pantry Moths
3 Ways to Make Kefir
SJP marital problems
10 Charities Helping Women To BREAKFREE From Shame
The Diabetes Pain Advil Can’t Cure
This Trick Makes Your Bagged Salad Taste So Much Better
Ryanair flash sale in Europe
How to Screed a Floor
This Babys Hilarious Reaction To Sticky Tape Will Have You Laughing All Day
How to Cook Basmati Brown Rice
10 Keys to Dating as a Single Dad