Bodyfit Magazine reader re-vamp

As originally seen in “Bodyfit” – May 2013


Dilini Ratnayeke asks:

I’m a dancer and also do lots of rowing. During the day I have an office job and sit for long periods of time. But, no matterhow often I train, I continuously have tight hamstrings – how can I improve my flexibility?”

Charlene answers:

The reality is that sitting in a chair forces your hamstrings to shorten. Improving the flexibility of any muscle group takes regular practise and the correct combination of exercises, stabilisations and dynamic and passive stretches. If you are weight training regularly, be sure to have a balance of quad (front of leg) and hamstring (back of leg) movements. I suggest you downplay the hamstring work for a few months. Still working with them, but less and with different moves to your normal routine. Avoid old fashioned machines where you isolate the muscles to a single (such as knee) joint action. Instead perform bridges on the floor and hamstring drags on  a Swiss ball. These bring more core stabilisation (abs and back) into the movement, allowing for more strength through your back. What this means for you, is that your hamstrings won’t be able to pull your pelvis down, but be balanced more by the back muscles that pull your pelvis up. Even strength between these muscles creates a neutral balance where the hamstrings don’t take over.

Include Pilates, yoga and both passive (non-moving) and dynamic (moving) stretches in your repertoire. Another tip is to have regular Thai and/or deep tissue massages. They’ll keep your tissues supple through the stretching and release of pressure points which can cause tightness.


View the original article here

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Charlene Hutsebaut

Charlene Hutsebaut is a Canadian Personal Trainer and corporate wellness speaker working in London. Charlene wants to help you become the hero in your own healthy story! She was a Life Fitness - Top 10 Global Finalist in the Personal Trainers to Watch Competition 2015. Charlene was the only UK woman to make it and 1 of only 3 women in the top ten. She brings her passion for the outdoors to the core of her workouts. She aims to make wellness achievable for everyone, with or without a gym membership. Her love of fitness started early, at age 3, on her first pair of ice skates. Since then, she has completed degrees in Physical Education and Education as well as studying Athletic Therapy. She is a Stott Pilates instructor and has Functional Sports Nutrition Academy Levels 1 & 2. She has logged an impressive 15,000 PT hours in her 24 years of experience. Charlene’s training is a cutting edge fusion of pilates foundations, mind-body connection and traditional weight training. Charlene trains at the St. Pancras Hotel Spa, or outdoors, in Mother Nature’s gymnasium. When she isn’t training or making fitness videos, Charlene runs corporate workshops, and is the featured expert in Psychologies Life Labs and Monarch Airlines in-flight magazines.

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