Achieving the Perfect Front Splits
Did you know there are two variations of front splits? There is the open front splits and the true front splits. These two splits are defined by your hip position. Generally, students find one position easier than the other depending on their natural flexibility. However unless the student has naturally flexible hips, the majority will find the true front split easier to achieve.
True Front Splits
Students who find the open front split easy to achieve often find the true front variation more challenging. If performed correctly, in the true front split your hips (or headlights as we refer to in the studio) will be facing towards your front foot. The video below show the muscles that need to be stretched to achieve the true front split.
Open Front Split
The open front split requires the student to have good hip, thigh and hamstring flexibility. Correct positioning for the open front split is when the hips are turn away from the front foot with one hip in front of the other. The open front split is required for student to successfully perform calisthenics elements such as progressing from a true front split into a swallow. The video below shows the muscles students use to perform this split.
Achieving both the true front split and the open front split can be challenging, but with continued practice you will get there. Remember, it is important to never force a split of any kind as this can lead to damaging your muscles and tendons. Always warm up first to avoid injury. There are also many videos out there than can give you tips but try to avoid amateur videos on YouTube as by following along you might do more damage than good.
If you love flex and want achieve your splits safely you could try one of the Easy Flexibility programs or have a chat with your coach about specific exercises that will benefit your progress. Please note, Acacia is in no way affiliated with Easy Flexibility. If you chose to purchase one of their videos, you do so at your own risk, but please remember to follow all safety instructions to avoid injury.