FLEXIBILITY: THREE TYPES OF STRETCHING FOR MOBILITY

LILIAN DIKMANS

Signing with Vivien’s after finishing high school, Lilian Dikmans worked as a model while undertaking her university studies. Landing campaigns for a number of Australian brands, she was the face of surf wear company Roxy for three consecutive seasons and was cast as the hero in a television commercial for Sony Cybershot cameras, airing throughout Asia.

After completing her degrees in Law and Commerce, she secured a job at a Melbourne law firm as a corporate lawyer. While working at the firm her interest in health and fitness developed, which led to her departure in 2013 to launch healthy living website Real Food Healthy Body.

Lilian returned to the modeling circuit, shooting campaigns for brands such as Lululemon and Russell Athletic and featuring in national television commercials for Pure Blonde and Kmart Australia.

Lilian had her first Muay Thai fight in Melbourne in 2016, Victoria and went on to have two professional fights in 2017. Victorious in these bouts, her current record is 3-0.

Lilian also works as a freelance digital content creator and recipe developer, and is on the editorial board of FIGHTMAG.

Lilian in full swing in the ring https://youtu.be/b8zDmGBXlpY


Before your workout it's tempting to turn up and launch straight into exercising and after, head home to eat and shower. Stretching is easy to neglect, but essential to do!

Ever since my ballet days, the importance of stretching has been drummed into me. Not only as a means to prevent injury but also to improve overall performance. Whether you want to execute a deep squat or a head kick, good mobility is essential. To achieve optimal mobility, here are three stretching techniques that I use.

Lilian Dikmans

DYNAMIC STRETCHING WARM UP

When I train, after an initial warm up of running and skipping, I do some dynamic stretches. Dynamic stretching usually refers to a series of movements that you perform to activate the muscles that you will use during training. The main ones I do before Muay Thai training are vertical and horizontal arm swings, shoulder rotations, leg swings and hip openers.

STATIC STRETCHING AFTER TRAINING

After training, static stretching is a good way to cool down and ensure your muscles recover nicely. Ideally you want to cover a range of stretches for the entire body. But if I’m short on time, I make sure I at least do a few stretches targeting the hip flexors, hamstrings, quads and calves. For me, they are the muscles that I feel need it the most after training. Hip flexors in particular. I aim to hold each stretch for at least 15 to 30 seconds. If you hold them for less than 15 seconds, the muscles usually just spring back to being tight.

DEEPER STRETCHING WITH YIN YOGA

I previously wrote about why I’m a fan of Yin yoga. With the stretches being held for prolonged periods of time, Yin style yoga gives you a deeper stretching experience that softens not only the muscles, but the connective tissue as well. I make sure it’s part of my routine and aim to do it at least once a week, often at home right before bed.



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