Suppleness training

Approach: Stretching

A female athlete stretches before a race
Stretching athlete

Stretching using static stretches where various parts of the body are in turn moved until a gentle stretch is felt. Stretches are held for 10 – 20 sec, on both sides of the body, with 6 - 8 repetitions of each exercise 4 - 5 times a week.

Applying the principles of training SPORT to suppleness training

ApproachSpecificityProgressionOverloadReversibilityTedium
StretchingStretching the muscle groups most required for the activity being developedIncrease the demand of training to force flexibility to keep improvingIncrease the length of the stretch or the number of repetitions completed or the time the stretch is held forBe aware that if training stops for any reason, the training ‘load’ must be reduced when training is restartedChange place/time of training, team up with someone else to train with

Question

How does stretching improve flexibility/suppleness?

By increasing the range of movement at a joint a performer would, for example, be able to stretch further or move their arms into a flat, table-like position to receive a powerful service in volleyball.