EXERCISE 2: Stability Ball Side Stretch
To stretch the muscles of the lower back and correct any one sided tightness. This exercise enables the cyclist to stretch the lower back without flattening it further.
Even stretching on the ball can feel wobbly if you have not used one before. Pay close attention to the position of the legs and increase the range of the movement as your confidence grows.
With practice you will find you are able to stretch further over the ball without wobbling or falling off. Subtle changes in body position can help you access the area that most needs the stretch. Practice will help you get a feel for this.
Start kneeling in a split stance next to your ball, with the leg nearest the ball behind you, and the one furthest from the ball in front of you.
A ninety-degree position on both knees with your toes tucked under at the back will help you balance.
Lean sideways onto the ball hugging it tight into your body.
Pushing upward and sideways with both legs, push onto the ball until you are laying over it on your side.
It is important to relax your head, neck and upper arm in order to let go of the chain of muscles you are trying to stretch.
Relax into this position for five seconds and then come out of the stretch by resting back on your knee and lifting your head for five seconds.
Repeat 5-7 times before changing sides.
If you notice you feel tighter on one side than the other, start with that side and come back to it for more stretching. Continue to favour your tighter side until you feel more even.
Week one: McKenzie press-up