Also referred to as Yoga blocks, Stretch blocks are versatile, lightweight pieces of equipment that can be used to add additional support or help you balance during stretching and they can also be used to adapt exercises to be both easier and more challenging.
How do I use a Stretch block?
Stretch blocks are traditionally used to help support your body while stretching or holding a Yoga pose. They have different sides that can be set to low, medium, and high positions to provide more or less support while stretching or holding a pose.
For example, if you are struggling to reach the ground during Toe Reaches, simply hold on to a block while you reach down and it will serve as an extension of your arms to then come in contact with the ground.
Another example would be placing the Stretch block on its medium or high position and using it to sit on and help support your weight as you perform a Deep Squat Hold.
As your muscles become more flexible and your joints more mobile over time, you can adjust which side of the block you use until you no longer need the support.
You can also use a Stretch block to increase the challenge, for example, standing on a block while performing Toe Reaches will increase the distance needed to reach the floor allowing you to stretch further.
Additionally, Stretch blocks can also be used to enhance your bodyweight training. You can use Stretch blocks to increase or decrease the difficulty of many exercises as well as target different muscles depending on where you place the blocks.
Easier exercise variations
Using a Stretch block to shorten the distance between you and the ground will make the exercise easier. This is also known as decreasing the range of motion for a particular exercise.
Using a Stretch block is a great way to gain confidence in your training. You can make an exercise easier, which is perfect for beginners or when trying to learn a new or advanced movement. Here are a couple of examples:
Pushups: Placing Stretch blocks on the floor underneath your chest while performing Pushups reduces the distance you need to lower your body down and push it back up, making this exercise easier.
As you get stronger and more confident with the movement, simply switch to the medium or low position of the block.
Lunges: Placing the Stretch block below your back knee will reduce the distance your body needs to go downwards and decrease the range of motion for this exercise.
Harder exercise variations
Stretch blocks can also be used to increase the distance between you and the ground, thereby increasing the range of motion of an exercise.
This makes the exercise more difficult. Here are some examples using the same exercises as above:
Pushups: Position your hands on the Stretch blocks when performing Pushups to allow your body to go further down. This will require you to push your body further up, making this movement more challenging.
Lunges: Stepping onto a block with your front foot when performing Lunges will increase the distance your back knee needs to go to reach the ground. This requires you to push your body further up with that front leg, making this movement more challenging.
Important: Always make sure to use Stretch blocks on a stable and non-slip surface.
Stretch blocks can be used to enhance every training no matter your fitness goal or fitness level. Whether you’re looking to get more out of your Warmups and Cooldowns, looking to make those difficult exercises a bit easier, or if you’re searching for that next challenge, utilizing this affordable, multi-purpose workout tool in your training will give you a seemingly endless amount of exercise variations.