Cheerleading | Heel Stretch
A heel stretch is a cheerleading move that is used everyday during a sporting event or placed in a competition to add a little flair. It is a move that looks great and is one that is a must for all high school cheerleaders. The heel stretch is completed by holding one foot in the cheerleaders same side hand above the cheerleaders head. A heel stretch is done on one foot and takes a lot of hip strength, stability, and balance. View the heel stretch video to see the heel stretch in motion. Take note of the form and technique. In this video you will see a cheerleader completing a heel stretch without Kbands, with Kbands, and then again without Kbands. She is working through a training exercise used to improve her heel stretch. Read more and learn how Kbands can help you improve your heel stretch.
What Can I do to Improve My Heel Stretch
As mentioned before, the heel stretch is important to competition cheerleaders. The best way to improve your heel stretch is to become more flexible. Holding your leg above your head in your hand takes an enormous amount of flexibility. A cheerleader must have full range of motion through his or her hamstrings, low back, groin, and glutes. If you are a beginner or not yet flexible enough to complete a heel stretch then it is essential to begin with flexibility. You can do everyday stretches and can get some benefit, but the best way to get a heel stretch is by stretching in the same fashion you want your body to move in. Use something to wrap around your foot and begin using it to pull your leg in the direction you need it to go. The best method is to use our Stunt Strap. Our Stunt Strap is made for cheerleading stretches. It fits securely around your foot and can be used to stretch your muscles in a sport specific fashion. There is no need to be good at bending over and touching your toes if it doesn't correlate to a better heel stretch. Head to our Stunt Strap Stretch Routine and watch our FREE video on how to get the flexibility you're looking for.
Use Kbands to Improve My Heel Stretch
As you see in the video, Kbands are used around the world to help cheerleaders gain the strength needed to hold a perfect heel stretch. The best way to use Kbands is to use them in the same sport specific movements you are looking to improve. Kbands were designed to give strength to athletes in the same fashion they perform. Kbands are perfect for cheerleaders. They allow you to move with full range of motion. The added resistance helps with hip stability, strength, and balance. To improve your heel stretch with Kbands you must first get stretched out. Grab your Stunt Strap and go through our Stretch Routine, or use whatever methods you feel most comfortable. Next start by doing a couple heel stretches without Kbands on. This will ensure your body is ready for the resistance added by Kbands.
Next, strap the leg bands around each leg and clip the resistance bands to each ring and you are ready to go.Working with Kbands is easy. After you are all clipped in complete 8 resisted heel stretches. Hold each heel stretch for 3-5 seconds and then release your leg. Relax your body and rest for 5-10 seconds and then repeat. After you have finished all eight reps, then you will unclip and take a break for 1 to 2 minutes. After this break, back to the resisted heel stretches. Follow the same sequence listed above for three sets. This sequence will build the strength in your hips needed to hold the highest and best looking heel stretches. After your three sets take the leg bands off and complete 3 sets of 5 repetitions. It is important to work for extended range of motion when the bands are off. When cheerleaders wear Kbands, muscle are recruited that normally are not used to complete the heel stretch due to the resistance. To improve your heel stretch it is essential you use this window of muscle recruitment to add flexibility and height to your leg.
Can't Do a Heel Stretch and Need Help
If you cannot perform a heel stretch, the best course of action is to figure out the reason why. If a cheerleader can not bring her leg into the heel stretch position when laying on her back, then flexibility is the problem and our Stunt Strap Stretch Routine is where this cheerleader needs to begin. If the cheerleader has no problem with range of motion, then the solution is strength. Two suggestions: Purchase Kbands Burn and begin building functional strength with each routine. This program will improve cheerleaders strength through combinations of full body movements. Second suggestion, complete squats, lunges, and abdominal exercises to strengthen your body.
After addressing your problem areas, your best course of action is to take action. Begin strengthening your body and working towards flexiblity. While you build a good foundation it is important to continue working to improve your heel stretch. Three times a week perform 3 sets of 10 heel stretches with the Stunt Strap. Lift your leg as high as you can and as you gain the flexibility and strength needed to have a perfect heel stretch move to the workout listed above utilizing Kbands.
Cheer Training Equipment