Maintain flexibility in your old age

Discussion on the three big Chinese internals, Yiquan, Bajiquan, Piguazhang and other similar styles.

Re: Maintain flexibility in your old age

Postby everything on Sun May 31, 2020 12:14 pm

bailewen wrote:https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/49956529767/in/dateposted-public/


damn that's fantastic and inspiring.

do you recall what were some of the more challenging steps to get there? and what did you stop doing over the 10 year period to lose some flexibility? besides aging?

my hamstrings used to be super tight and now they feel ok. I think my calves and hips are now relatively not as limber.
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Re: Maintain flexibility in your old age

Postby johnwang on Sun May 31, 2020 3:15 pm

bailewen wrote:At fifty, I can't do this any more, but this pic was when I was about 40.

Sometime we may just give up a bit too early. Lately I have found that to freeze my kicking leg in the air is getting harder and harder. I decide to spend the next 1 month just concentrate on "hold kicking leg in the air".

When we were young, we can do something. When we get older, we start to lose it. But when we get older, if we spend twice amount (or 3 times amount) of time to maintain, will we still lose it? I don't know. But I like to find out myself.

In other words, when we get older, we should do more and not do less.
Last edited by johnwang on Sun May 31, 2020 3:32 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Maintain flexibility in your old age

Postby Xing Yi Monkey on Wed Jun 24, 2020 12:04 pm

Crikey - I hope that I can do that at his age!!
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Re: Maintain flexibility in your old age

Postby Daniel-san on Tue Jul 07, 2020 10:43 pm

johnwang wrote: Can you still improve during your old age? I don't know. Have never heard anybody who could do that.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JOXfWuvifHg

Last edited by Daniel-san on Tue Jul 07, 2020 10:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Maintain flexibility in your old age

Postby everything on Wed Jul 08, 2020 6:49 am

Wow what an inspiring woman.

The video didn't seem to cover much of her background. Before she was feeling old and weak, was she an athlete in her younger years, etc.? Was she a "normal person" who gained this ability only late in life? Was she a lifelong non-athlete with poor flexibility? Or did she somewhat regain it? In any case, it's incredible to see her progress. Watching the video immediately motivated me to go stretch, lol.

Somewhat on a tangent, it surprised me that Roy Jones Jr. apparently couldn't touch his toes before. How could an elite athlete at the top of the sport not touch his toes? Here, he does it (very briefly) supposedly for the first time after some chiropractic and PT work:
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Re: Maintain flexibility in your old age

Postby Peacedog on Wed Jul 08, 2020 7:17 am

Big issues associated with flexibility as we age tend to come with reduced collagen production and strength in general.

In older populations, a lack of range of motion (i.e. flexibility) usually has to do with physical weakness and the body protecting itself by limiting its ROM.

Another phenomena I've seen is spontaneous failure of ligaments and tendons in older people. A friend, now deceased, was playing a game of basketball at the Pentagon gym when his Achilles tendon ruptured. It sounded like a gunshot. The man was in his early 70's, had never been overweight, was in shape and was doing something he routinely did.

The lack of collagen production over time had made his tendons less pliant and a big one broke. Luckily, due to his being well conditioned, he recovered from surgery fully to the amazement of his surgeon.

So, I think the difficulty in improving flexibility with age comes from many factors, not the least of which is the tendency of the tissue itself to become more rigid over time. In TCM we refer to this as the "sinews drying out." An interesting beneficial side effect of this is a tendency for people in their late 20's and 30's who have had chronic back pain to stop having back pain in their mid 40's. The tissues in the back become a little more rigid, which increases spinal stability and reduces pain.
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