Suppleness & Balance

Flexibility is the range of movement across
a joint.
Most activities require flexibility. Having
good flexibility reduces the chances of
straining or pulling muscles.
The Effects of Flexibility on Performance
In many activities flexibility is required; for example, when
hurdling in athletics and when swimming back crawl.
The hurdler needs hip flexibility in particular, as this will
help the hurdler clear the hurdles with minimum effort and
maximum efficiency.
The swimmer needs back flexibility to help when pushing
off, and arm and shoulder flexibility to produce a wide range
of movement. The wider the range of movement the more
effective the stroke.
Two types of flexibility
There are two types of flexibility: static and
dynamic flexibility:
Static flexibility is necessary when you are
holding a balance e.g. in gymnastics.
Dynamic flexibility is a fast action that is
not held for any length of time. An example
would be a volley in football
Training to Improve Flexibility
Exercises to maintain and improve flexibility
are usually either static or dynamic.
To improve static flexibility you would hold a
stretch for at least 20 seconds.
To improve dynamic flexibility you would use
ballistic stretching (stretching on the move)
exercises (spry session).
Monitoring the Effectiveness of
Flexibility Training
It is important to monitor training:
• To avoid over-training
• To see if your training is working
One way to see if your training is working is to re-test
yourself (Sit and Reach Test) after so many weeks of
Appropriate training methods will have a positive effect
on performance levels specific to the activity
Benefits of Improved Flexibility
• Improved Physical Performance and Decreased Risk of
A flexible joint has the ability to move through a greater range
of motion and requires less energy to do so, while greatly
decreasing your risk of injury.
• Improved Skilled Performance
• Improved Muscle Coordination
• Increased Blood and Nutrients to Tissues
This allows greater elasticity of surrounding tissues and
increases performance.
Balance is the ability to retain the centre of
gravity over your base of support. There are
two types of balances:
1) Static balances
2) Dynamic balances
Centre of Gravity
Centre of gravity is to do with stability.
i. The heavier you are, the more stable you will
ii. To be balanced your centre of gravity should be
inside your base
iii.A low position with a wide base is more
Centre of Gravity