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Thread: Back flexibility

  1. #1
    the running guy Guest

    Back flexibility

    I want to improve flexibility in my back. Right now my back is as stiff as a board, and consequently it has impeded my progress on training up to a back handspring. Any stretches or excercises that can correct this? And, no, having someone sever my spinal cord in multiple place is not a viable option!

  2. #2
    mad taoist Guest

    back stretch

    This is an excercise our Sifu gets us to do .... something you have seen before without doubt :)

    Lay flat on your back, hands on either side of your head (as if ready for a hand spring) and using your arms and legs, push up. Same old stretching rules apply -- push to were you are comfortable, ideally, straighten your legs and arms.

    Or you can play limbo -- another thing we do at kung fu !

    These are mainly excercises to prepare us for drunken form, which is one of the last forms.

    'If we do not go within, we go without'.

  3. #3
    JWTAYLOR Guest
    Look at the Bridge. Also, check out the book "Learn Yoga in a Weekend".

  4. #4
    Brian_CA Guest

    re: stiff backs.

    Dear Miles,

    Do not do Matt Furey's Bridge. You will hurt your neck and back if you have a stiff back. In fact do not any handsprings or such motion for a least 6 months. In order to get to that level, you have to start slow and steady. Mr. Fureys videos should be done once your back if no longer stiff.

    Find a good yoga instructor in your area. Read a bunch of Yoga books. Go to, they have a bunch of good stuff.

    To make the back flexible you will need time and good beginner routine. Do not try any routine without qualified instruction or proper personal knowledge. If you hurt your spine you will be out for quite a while.

    Hope this helps,

    Brian Monnier, San Francisco

  5. #5
    JWTAYLOR Guest
    Brian CA, that has not been my experience at all. I started Matt Furey's back program with horribly stiff back. Even after doing Kundalini Yoga for a year, I could still not even touch my toes because of my back. My legs and hips were loose, but my back was still incredibly stiff. I went to a doctor about it and she said that she had seen people with back surgery with more lower spine flexibility than mine. Furey's book changed all of this.
    I have a feeling that you have not read Furey's book. It has allot of exercises for the back, including several exercises for working up to the full brige. I couldn't come close to doing the bridge the first time I tried, but 4 months later I was doing a complete bridge and touching my toes like it was nothing. It's been a life changing book for me.


    If you pr!ck us, do we not bleed? If you poison us, do we not die? And if you wrong us, shall we not revenge? If we are like you in the rest, we will resemble you in that the villany you teach me, I will execute, and it shall go hard but I will better the instruction. MOV

  6. #6
    Brian_CA Guest

    Matt Furey

    Actual I have read his materials. While I think that they are good in nature, I feel that the long term damage done without proper instruction to the spine is not good. The "bridge" or "wheel" is an advanced posture and not for beginners. Please keep in mind that most Yoga found in the US is no longer true Hatha (athletic) Yoga. If you only did Yoga for one year, then of course so only saw a limited progress. Yoga also takes a long time to master. One must have patience, determination, focus, understanding all the things that in the long term are good both personally and physically. Do not we as Martial artists strive for these things aslo?

    Your tight back also might not be just your back. It could have been your hips, lower abs or a number of other things that needed to heal before your back would release.

    Your instuctor may not have been that good also. Just as in Martial arts it is hard to find a good one.


    Brian Monnier
    San Francisco

  7. #7
    JWTAYLOR Guest

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