Saturday, June 26, 2010

An Olympian gets Stretched using Resistance Stretching

I was doing some resistance stretching last night (something I haven't done in a while) in order to to work on my tight quads. When I was done, I checked out the resistance (or meridian) stretching websites (again something I haven't done in a while) and saw a video I hadn't noticed before on Bob Cooley's Meridian Stretching site. I think there are three variations on doing resisitance stretching: one is self-stretching, one is getting stretched by a stretcher, and the other is this wild looking stretching where a bunch of stretchers work on one athlete like he or she is a human maleable pretzel. I have seen a few videos online of this type of stretching before (most notably with Olympic swimmer Dara Torres) and it always looks visually fascinating . The new video shows Olympic speed skater Nancy Swider-Peltz Jr. getting stretched before the Vancouver Olympics.

I don't know Nancy Swider-Peltz Jr. but I watched her in the Olympics (her Olympics blog). By the time I started attending Wheaton College in 1977, her mom Nancy Swider was a student at the school and already an Olympic speed skater (seventh in the 3000m at the 1976 Innsbruck Games) and had set a world record weeks after the Olympics. Her dad Jeff Peltz was a football player who lived a couple doors down in my dorm one year. Her mom went on to participate in 4 Olympics, and I always marveled when hearing about the many hours she spent in daily training to be an Olympian. These were the days before my college (and many schools) even had a women's cross-country team. Women were just breaking into sports and  here was a world class athlete doing unheard of things with incredible discipline and drive. This was also before the time of cross-training being fashionable (in fact it wasn't even a word back then) so besides all the speed-skating and drills she did, she sometimes ran with the cross-country team,  swam on the swim team, and she biked.  It certainly was eye-opening for someone like me who thought that running was hard work to see someone so intense in athletic ambition and ahead of the times in training ideas. I also have never seen a lady with stronger looking quads in my life!

Here is a blog post interviewing one of the stretchers working on Nancy Swider-Peltz Jr.

Here is one of my posts on resistance stretching that includes links to many other posts.

I also noticed that Bob Cooley's Meridian Stretching site has listed classes at his Boston studio to learn and practice self-stretching. I may have to try going down sometime. I have three videos on resistance stretching, but it would be good to get pointers. The classes are only $20. I went to a stretcher once and it was great to get worked on, but it was ridiculously priced (unless you were extremely rich, it was too unaffordable no matter what the benefits). Here is my post on that experience. I would have loved to have done more, but I am not ridiculously rich.

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