leg stretches

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leg stretches

Leg Stretches

Last week we told you how to get started with exercising and some simple arm, neck and torso stretches. This week we take a look at leg stretches.

Leg stretches are particularly important for making you able to do the splits without discomfort and pain. However, some of these leg stretches can be used to improve flexibility for everyone.


It is advisable that you check with your parents/coaches first before trying poses yourself.

Take it easy with the stretches to begin with. Don’t try new stretches on your own without help, and don’t overdo them. Do what your body can handle; stretches should never hurt.

Start with a 2 to 3 minute warm up with your preferred cardio exercise, remember that you only warm up once you start sweating!



STEP ONE – Sit on the ground with your legs together and straight out in front of you. Reach over your legs towards your toes, keeping your back straight. Try to bring your chest closer to your legs. If this is difficult, try it with your right leg bent a little, and then switch to the left leg.

STEP TWO – Still sitting on the floor, place your legs at a right angle – one facing straight ahead and the other to the side. Stretch forwards to one leg with your back straight and hold for 30 seconds. Do the same to the opposite leg, holding for 30 seconds again. If it starts to hurt then hold the stretch for a smaller amount of time and build yourself up to the 30 seconds.

STEP THREE – Place your legs at a 90 degree position, lean and stretch your body forward between your legs with a straight back. Hold the pose for 30 seconds. If it starts to hurt then hold the stretch for a smaller amount of time and build yourself up to the 30 seconds.



LUNGES – Lunge forward with your front leg at a right angle and your back knee and foot along the ground, holding for 30-60 seconds (depending on how comfortable you feel doing it). Straighten your front leg and stretch it for 30-60 seconds (again depending on comfort). Return to the first lunge position, this time pull your back leg towards your bottom with your hand, hold for 30-60 seconds. Return to lunge position and flex your front foot for 30-60 seconds. Return to standing position and repeat with the other leg being the front leg.

This next exercise should only be completed if you can do the previous exercise and stretches comfortably. When trying for the first few times, ask someone to supervise you as you’re doing it to ensure you don’t injure yourself.

Wall Split

Wall Split – Lie with your back on the floor. Your bottom should be fairly close to the wall and your legs up and against the wall. Spread your legs slowly to the side until you can feel the stretch – Don’t try and go further than the stretch! Gravity and the weight of your legs will help to push them down. Hold for one minute or until you feel uncomfortable, you can always build up to the full minute.

To finish, jog, dance or do an another exercise for 2 minutes.