Today you will get the benefit of knowing a poker-playing Army doctor. In honor of shaving 30 seconds off of my three mile run this morning, I want to share with you something I learned from the Army training guide. Back when I was enlisted and doing PT (physical training) 3 to 5 days a week, the sergeant in charge would line us up and run us through a series of stretches before our exercise. Some of the stretches hurt, so I knew they were working. Others, like the stretch below, didn’t feel like they were doing anything.
If I could give you one stretch to do every day, it would be this one.
Here is the simple explanation. The VMO (Vastus Medialis Obliquus) is not exercised in normal walking and running. This stretch not only loosens the ankle and knee ligaments, it targets the VMO. This provides balance to the muscles surrounding the knee.
Balance is good.
Editors Note: I just read the Wiki page linked above, which seems to refute my claim about the VMO. All I know is, this exercise works. It also may combat Chondromalacia and Patellofemoral Syndrome.
Oh yeah – happy Cinco de Mayo! Gotta love a holiday that celebrates beating the French.