TO STRETCH OR NOT TO STRETCH 

When you visit my club at the very beginning of the shift you will catch many of the dancers stretch on stage or in the lap dance booth. They are getting readyy for their pole and floor dance magic.

The average stripper retires in her thirties. Often knee, shoulder, and hip issues won’t allow us to dance into our forties. We do have an expiration date, and in this industry sadly you lose value with increasing age. However, often physical ailments, popped out knees, torn meniscuses, shoulder rotator and hip joint damage are the primary cause for early retirement. Yes, our profession is physically taxin, however just like in fitness nobody teaches how to take care of your body. We stretch and pull and push to make sure we give an impressive performance, but none of these dancers stretch after their shift is over. Often, there’s no energy left, but also there’s no knowledge on how to take care of a hard working body when the hard work is over. The same applies to spin classes, Pilates, barre, kickboxing, and other classes. While most instructors and dancers somehow understand how to warm up a body and get it ready for high intensity work, nobody has yet understood how to prep out of an intense practice or what to do after a performance. The art of stretching and restoring has been lost or maybe not yet discovered. You’ll see a fitness instructor or dancer yank out a quick stretch ones the “main part” of the work is done. The body is left in agony and with shortened, often misaligned muscles and tendons. But there’s no time, knowledge, nor patience to do what most people don’t understand: stretch! A quicky 10 second yank seems to be enough or most people even skip that. Yet I believe that stretching after any physical demand is what would brings sanity to the mind and body, and avoids long term injuries and keeps the body functioning, strong, and healthy  for much longer than just through your early thirties. But even physical therapists don’t understand that yet. Often, it’s just a wishy wushy stretchy stretch. 

So if you ask me, a truly deep and correctly executed stretching and restorative routine after your workout or performance is even more important than beforehand. And if you do stretch before you dance or train don’t ever stretch on cold joints. 

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