MD writes: “I am looking for an alternative to yoga, which I practiced pretty regularly before coming back to my Catholic faith and trying to live my faith more fully. I found something called Lastics® and was wondering if this was safe.”
Thank you, MD, for bringing this stretching alternative to my attention. I’m happy to report that it is indeed yoga-free and appears to be as safe as conventional stretching exercises.
For those who have never heard of it, Lastics® is a series of dance-inspired standing and seated stretches that are designed to elongate muscles from end-to-end.
“Unlike methods that rely on external force to push a stretch, Lastics® trains your body to move internally to stretch itself. That is how dancers move the way they do and it is also the key to their flexibility,” the website explains.
Classes, which run anywhere from 60 to 90 minutes, teach participants how to properly move hips and spine, and to use arms, legs and head as “natural weights” to create resistance in a series of stretching moves.
The method was designed by Donna Flagg, a professional dancer who suffered a dance-related injury and decided to combine her knowledge and experience in dance into a new stretching technique that was accessible to people of all ages and physical conditions. She is currently instructing at the New York Health and Racquet Club, and her Lastics® classes are being taught in ballet schools and dance academies across the country.
Some of the benefits of Lastics® listed on the site include lengthening muscles and strengthening the body, relieving tension and improving posture.
Anyone who wants the benefits of a good stretch but without the religious trappings of Yoga, Lastics® is the way to go!
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