OR TRY A COMBO PLATTER
So … what if you don’t have time to do the “ideal” number of separate workouts for strength, stamina and flexibility? What if your weeks are, like mine, a running challenge to get people and animals fed, make clean clothes happen, and maintain a reasonably dirtand disease-free home---not to mention meeting work deadlines, tending to barn and horse chores, spending some riding time, and paying at least a minimum of attention to personal needs. Oh yes, and then there are the urgencies of life that won’t wait, like birthdays, car trouble, paying bills. If you, like me, look for places to double up (and double down on results), this could be as good a solution for you as it is for me.
The answer Dara Torres discovered and relates in her latest book, Gold Medal Fitness, is a form of resistance stretching called Ki-Hara, which she credits with maximizing her workouts and making a huge difference in her overall physique. Ki-Hara is a form of combined flexibility, strength training and core work refined by Steven Sierra and Anne Tierney of Innovative Body Solutions. The gist of it is moving your arms and legs in specific rotational and diagonal patterns to continually engage your core muscles and gain strength and flexibility in all ranges of motion.
Torres explains that Ki-Hara teaches the body how to contract its muscles while they’re being stretched and strengthened (“eccentrically”) and while engaging and energizing the core (“concentrically”) in ways that are most effective for strengthening and preventing injury. “Ki-Hara trains muscles in the way they are used most frequently,” she adds. “This strengthens the body dynamically.”
The object of this kind of stretching is “taking a muscle from its shortest position to its longest position, while continually resisting (contracting) the muscle.” Also known as the e-centric