Welcome to Discuss Fastpitch

Your FREE Account is waiting to the Best Softball Community on the Web.

Register Log in

Dynamic Stretching - Marc D & others- your thoughts?

Mar 2, 2009
Suffolk, VA
1) As Marc and many schools now demonstrate, Dynamic stretching warms the girls up and STATIC stretches SLOW the nervous system and are best to be left for AFTER the activity......

** Question I have is 2 years ago, I watched U of Arizona work Dynamic stretches and NOT static stretches while attending a coaches clinic in Tucson, AZ. Last year, they did static stretching on their OWN first, THEN Dynamic Stretching and I am seeing this a little more..... mixing Dynamic stretches with STATIC Stretching....
****** Thoughts???

Also, I ALWAYS have believed athletes should start with a light jog to warm the muscles and joints up and get the blood flowing, BEFORE STRETCHING......
Our HS team does NOT jog before their stretches and I'm not clear why this makes sense. ANy thoughts?


Softball fan
Feb 28, 2008
Montreal, Canada
Hi Jim,

You are correct with your first statement.

Dynamic warm-ups are becoming more mainstream now. However, static stretches are still around and will be for a while. We are a very conservative sport and things take time to change.

Plus, static stretching (jog and get warm, then stretch) is deeply establish as how things should be done and players tend to like the "relaxing effect of static stretching".

From a physical preparation standpoint, no real benefits unless a specific stretch was prescribed by a therapist for a problem are like a back for back pain. In healthy athletes, no need. You should dynamic stretch.

Now, will that really hurt you? if you do 1-2 static stretch for a few seconds, not likely but if you do quite a bit of it, yes it will.

See why on this page:

Dynamic Warm-Up for Softball

Now, if you are going to do some static stretches, you have to do before dynamic stretches to make sure to stimulate or activate the nervous system a bit.

You are correct, you need to warm-up the body first before stretching. How you get warmed does not matter as long as you do.

Several options are:

1) Jog around the field
2) Play some form of fun game (soccer, etc.)
3) Run agility ladder (start nice and easy not all out)
4) Do dynamic mouvements like lunges or running forms drills (butt kicks, high knees, carioca) that will raise your body temperature
5) Skipping rope

You have to get warm, then you focus on the stretching part (dynamic ideally).

You can't skip the jog part and use dynamic movement to get you warm - like I show in my system (see the link above). It is better that way for softball.

Feb 3, 2010
Pac NW
Bump (I was questioned again on my exclusion of static stretching and this thread was a good refresher.)
May 7, 2008
In Candrea's most recent camp he said that the players insist on static stretching. He gives them 10 minutes.

I played back when we never did anything more than more up our arms and I think that I saw fewer injuries then, then I am now.
Sep 6, 2009
State of Confusion
I dont think static stretching can do any harm, if followed by jogging , throwing, and dynamic stretches. Static is a good way to ease into things when you are cold.

Never ever would someone depend on static stretching alone to be a warmup.

The pros say 1) general warmup (jog, etc) 3-4 min 2) neural wake-up and agility (2-3 min) agility ladder, etc, 3) dynamic stretches 3-4 min.

Common sense tells you this is right for performance.

Go warm up, and run a 40yd dash a few times and be timed. You will not have the best time the first attempt.
Go lift weights and try for a personal best in a lift, you will not have the best lift until you have worked upwards toward it, cant approach it cold, you will do 10-20% less.

The evidence that the nervous system must "wake up" for peak performance is right there for you to see.

I am unclear if the question is regarding injury or performance? I know the performance data says dynamic warmups are what to do.
Last edited:
Sep 6, 2009
State of Confusion
These are examples of dynamic flexibility warmups that our local sports performance center recomends for softball. Note that I am not an expert, I just try to do what the experts tell me to do.:

Begin in pushup position. The athlete will then inchworm their feet up without bending their legs until they can go no further without bending them….they will hold position for a three count then walk their hands out to the perfect push up position and begin again.

Balance on your right foot with perfect posture
(Abs tight, shoulders back and down). Bend at the waist and maintaining perfect posture, reach the floor with your left hand on the opposite side. Keep the back leg extended and your back should remain straight the whole time.

Stand in an athletic posture, step out to the right/left, and keep your toes pointed straight ahead and feet flat. Squat by sitting back and down onto your right leg, keeping your left leg straight and the weight on the right leg’s mid-foot to heel. Squat as low as possible, keeping your left leg straight, pushing out over the outside edge of foot and holding this position for 2 seconds. Return to the standing position and repeat.

WALKING QUAD STRETCH: Hold for three count then take step and perform on opposite side.

Start with your feet together, step back with your right leg into a lunge. Arch your back slightly while twisting your torso over your left leg and while reaching your right hand to the sky and reaching for your right heel with your left hand. Push back and out of that position into the next lunge

Place one hand UNDER the knee and the other hand UNDER the heel. You are going to lift your leg straight up and fire off of your toe. Then move into the next cradle with the other leg. Be athletic and Springy!

Start with your feet together, step forward with your left leg into a lunge. Then, twist with the opposite elbow toward the front knee while keeping your back straight. In other words, right elbow to left knee and vice versa.

Flex body forward keeping back straight and perform lateral weight shift/lunge while performing trunk twist/arm swing to the same side. Perform 30 times

Keep fingertips loosely on shoulders and then flap arms by touching elbows and then pull them apart as far as possible, protracting and retracting the shoulder blades during the activity. Perform 15 times.

Large circles forward and backwards 15 times each

and heres a bit on dynamic warmup:

Softball Dynamic Warm-up/Recovery

Active Warm-up/Movement Preparation

The dynamic warm-up can reduce your risk of injury and boost your performance by properly preparing your body for the demands of training, practices, or competition. Static Flexibility/Stretching is used to aide in recovery and helps to improve joint range of motion but does little to reduce a player’s risk of injury prior to participation in an activity and can reduce neuromuscular power output. Therefore it should be primarily utilized at the end of any sustained athletic session during a cool down period.

The purpose of the warm-up is to: 1) gradually increase the body’s core temperature; thereby improving connective tissue and muscle elasticity 2) Increase the range of motion around the joints and 3) Turn on the nervous system.

The Dynamic Warm-UP consists of three parts: A general warm-up to lubricate the joints and raise core temperature, agility training to bridge the gap from being “warm and awake” to being “explosive and dynamic”, and integrated flexibility training to improve range of motion, joint integrity/stability, and proprioceptive awareness by actively elongating muscles for long term gain.

Some key points to keep in mind:

1)Insist on proper form, execution and 100% effort at all times
2)Maintain proper spine to hip relationship (Neutral Spine) during warm-up
3)Take the warm-up seriously as it prepares the mind and body for a quality performance
4)Take time to cool down and recover after each session by performing static stretching (Hold each stretch 45-60secs each)


Initiate the warm-up with a moderately brisk jog for 3-4 minutes.

Set up cones or lines 30-45 feet apart and skip forward with high knees (not sprint), then back pedal w/good technique (Butt down and back on balls of feet), then forward butt kickers, back pedal, then sprint forward with good technique (arm speed and direction).

Next, carioca’s or grapevine for two series….keep shoulder abducted to 90 degrees and elbows bent to 90 degrees the entire time

Finally, lateral shuffles for two series keeping toes straight ahead, butt down and back, back arched, and arms in ready position.
Last edited: