What is the Fast Split Mastery Certification Course
In one sentence it's a combination of my life’s work, put together into a simple to understand system, to get splits fast and easily maintain them.
But the story begins decades earlier.
A little kid growing up in a very angry poor place. There was never enough food, clothing, freedom, etc. Everyone was sick, tired and upset. As an expression of that, each person would take out their frustration on someone smaller. I was at the bottom of the food chain.
One day a friend of mine told me about someone called Bruce Lee. "He is below average height, and skinny, but no one messes with him". I asked, "Really? How does he do it?”. "He knows Martial Arts”, my friend said. He explained to me that there is a way to defend yourself, by knowing how to move and do various techniques.
So naturally a pre-teen me set out to find a teacher, a club, anything.
Here is the funny part. Where I lived, Martial Arts was illegal. The closest I could get was Boxing, Wrestling and Fencing. We played some mean dodge ball, but that's another story.
I was very much drawn to kicking, but there was no one who could teach me. The best I could do was to try to copy what I saw in the movies. I developed some incorrect kicks as the result.
Fast forward few years and I am in the United States. I am still practicing weird kicks. They don't look like Bruce Lee’s or Chuck Norris’, even though I am practicing everyday.
Finally I get my father to call a local martial arts school. They charged $20 dollars for the first two lessons plus free uniform. Later on I found out that they charged $75 dollars a month. However my father with his English at the time, got the cost wrong. (He thought it was $20 for every 2 lessons) His salary was $5/hour so martial arts lessons were out of the question.
I tried to get a job, but was rejected everywhere I applied.
As time passed by I knew that my kicks looked off, but I was more concerned about kicking height and position of my torso. I really did not know what to do, till one day it came to me.
I was watching Blood Sport.
Van Damme’s Master kept stretching him into a split. From that moment on I knew. I needed a split. So I started to split. I had no idea what I was doing, but I kept pushing and pushing and pushing. I relied on the stretches I learned before, but they were very harsh. I was very lucky looking back.
This fortunate turn of events prevented a major injury. You see my school was a long walk away. I used to stretch, when I came home. That long, brisk walk, would warm up my legs. Had I tried to stretch that hard- cold, I probably would have snapped something.
So I ended up getting a split, the old fashion way. It took a lot of pain, a lot of time (a year and a half) and a lot of effort. But I got it. A few times I had minor pulls, so I would stop and come back.
Guess what? My kicks got higher.
At that moment I knew the importance of flexibility and I never forgot it.
Skipping forward a little bit, I have an after-school job. (Stock Boy in a local pharmacy). I finally enroll in Martial Arts. The cost of tuition, uniform, testing, etc. I am paying part and my parents are paying part.
This was the official start of my "kicking" martial arts training. At this point I have an advantage over other students.
I am flexible and they are not. My stances are better, my kicks are better. I am craving for knowledge, so anything I learn, I go home and drill for hours.
Flexibility alone gave me a head start.
Other students asked me if I could help them. Everyone wanted a split. Even students who were not serious about training. I guess for the "show off", "party trick purposes" they still wanted it.
They thought I was an expert in flexibility, just because I could do a split. But guess what... all I could tell them was to keep pushing, keep doing it, “one day it will happen”.
Then they would ask me “How long did it take you?” I would say about a year and a half. Hearing that, they were discouraged. My instructors were saying the same thing. "It takes a long time". "It takes a long time".
Somewhere in the middle of all this an idea was born. "People really want splits" - "If I could teach them to do it, they would enroll in my classes". This idea stayed with me all the way through college.
In college I spoke to various professors. Kinesiology, Biomechanics, Human Movement, Exercise Physiology, Motor Learning, etc. Anyone with education or experience in training. “Do you have any advice on stretching”, I would ask.
You know what I heard back??? “Yes, hold a stretch for 30 seconds. Eventually it will come”. "Yeah…”, I thought to myself, it will come, but not 30 seconds per stretch, one time. Many, many times. Like I did, and very, very slowly. This was my experience and the experience of many others’ who asked me to help them stretch.
However all was not in vain. I did learn the science of human body, which my future research and discoveries would be based on.
One of the professors suggested something called PNF. She did not suggest it to me actually, but to the whole class. We did a lesson on stretching. We partnered up and did a straight legged hamstrings stretch, in supine position (on the back).
Stretch the hams, contract against resistance at full stretch. Stretch a little bit more. Do the same for the antagonist (contract the hip flexors and quads) and stretch. It worked, just a tiny bit, but it worked. The largest problem was that results did not stick. You get a little more flexible and then the next day or 2 days later (whenever stretching again), it was the same thing. Starting where you started before. No progress was retained from the previous training session.
And of course more than one person pulled their hamstrings, walking funny the next day. This naturally reaffirmed their belief in "slow, relaxed stretches, that should never be forced".
My next discovery came with the sequencing of stretches. In kinesiology I learned that adductors (save for Adductor Magnus Ischial) are hip flexors. So a crude, but rather groundbreaking experiment at that time worked. Having stretched the adductors first, allowed to stretch the hip into extension deeper, as opposed to just doing a lunge stretch without hitting the adductors first.
Other examples of this principle, allowed a deeper hams stretch if piriformis and adductor magnus were hit first, etc. This was already a progress. I was able to provide better results, though these results were not sticking too well. They were retained, but not at the level where they were visible day to day. And that is what I wanted. To witness improvement every day.
However, early on at this point a few principles were adopted and they began to show progress:
- Proper Conditioning.
- Proper Warm Up.
- Muscle Sequencing.
- Contraction of Agonists and Antagonists.
- Short Duration Stretches (unless it's Cool Down).
This method alone carefully outlined and thoroughly presented, got thousands of people splits.
My biggest problem was… time.
Most people drop a project if they don't see constant encouragement, constant results. And even with this method, results were not drastically evident and not super fast. They were much, much faster than how I got them. More pleasant, less painful, less effort demanding. This means more people kept training and more got their splits.
However, just like Bill Gates wanted everyone to have a PC and Steve Jobs wanted everyone to have an iPhone, I wanted everyone to be as flexible as they wanted, without limit. With systematic, observable progress. I did not have a fast method for that. Definitely faster, but not fast.
At this time I was getting multiple emails a day from people who used my method and were very happy with progress. Still instinctively I knew that it could be done faster. I did not khow how yet, but I had a hunch.
One day I stumbled on something that would change stretching forever.
A swimmer friend of mine asked me to help him with his shoulder. He wanted a better internal rotation. He was on the side, with his arm abducted at 90 degrees. He tried to forcefully push the hand to the floor. Nothing was happening. I was sitting on a chair, thinking of what he could do. Then he shifted position for whatever reason: he turned his chest to the floor, creating a horizontal flexion. Than he came back to where he was and his arm turned in more.
Having studied and taught Kinesiology something clicked in my head at that moment. You see the same muscles that do horizontal extension (opposite of that little move that he did by accident), they also do the external rotation (opposite of the direction he wanted to stretch in).
I asked him to do that again. He did not. So I laid down on the floor and did it myself. Bam! In a split second I had increased the flexibility of my shoulder in the internal rotation. I tried the other arm. I held a passive, relaxed stretch and nothing. Shoulder not moving. I tried to move chest down,and as I came back, the shoulder went deeper.
This was the moment! Knowing the science of how the body moves, I was able to find the right position for each muscle to be optimally stretched and to test this theory.
It worked. Flawlessly.
Each and every time. For every muscle. Next I needed to test this on others. I did. The amazed faces people made after trying my techniques, were priceless.
Now I knew how to stretch any muscle. But people don't want to stretch a muscle. People want a skill. For example a split is many muscles that require stretching. A kick is many muscles. Even an overhead, vertical arm position implies multiple well elongated muscles to make it happen. Again kinesiology came to the rescue. All I had to do was break the skill down into individual muscles and stretch them one by one. At the rapid pace that each muscle stretched, developing flexibility for the whole skill became piece of cake.
So kinesiology helped me twice. In its honor, I called the stretching techniques "Kinesiological Stretching Techniques" (KST).
At this point I came closer to my goal of making everyone flexible fast.
There was one little problem. Flexibility retention. At this point, I could take anyone and visibly improve their flexibility in one training session. I could improve it more than relaxed stretches, than PNF, etc... but comes tomorrow, and we start almost from square one. In other words, I take your straddle side split from 90 degrees to 110 degrees for example. And next day, you are at 90 again. At this rate, you will get discouraged. Yes, you will be happy to see progress while training, but then starting in virtually the same place the next day and day after day, and day after day...
Retaining your gains is crucial. I needed to figure this out.
At this point Kinesiological Stretching is taking off. Everyone is using the techniques. Martial Artists, Dancers, Gymnasts, even various ball players. They work super as a warm up. If you are throwing a ball or kicking with extra range of motion in your hip or shoulder, imagine how much better your game is. But I did not want this method to be just the new warm up. I wanted a system to get everyone flexible fast. I couldn’t get that out of my mind.
The last piece of the puzzle comes together, when I observe athletes use KST. I was asked to do flexibility work with martial artists and dancers. Seeing a chance to learn more, I accepted. And learn more, I did. I have taught at a number of different places. Some were just a "stretching class" as they called it; I stretch the students and they went home. In other places I would stretch them and they would dance or spar or do “kata” later.
There was a difference in retention of flexibility. Students who only came to stretch, came back less flexible than the ones who stretched and then trained after.
This was the retention I was looking for. Students who practiced after stretching, have got the musculoskeletal and nervous system to accept the new-deeper range of flexibility as normal and natural. While those who just stretched, have simply told the body, "you can go into this range, after stretching only, for only short a period of time, and then you come back to where you were before stretching".
Feeling that my system was close to completion, I began to test various exercises that would be best for retention. I tested many exercises for each muscle group, for each joint and for each skill.
Utilizing this system, I set out to answer a question that bugged me years. Actually it bugged my costumers and clients for years, but it bugged me more because I could not answer it for them.
“How fast can I get a split?”
People don't like to hear: "I don't know". The second you say that, they think you don't know what you’re talking about. From an instructor’s perspective it's not a good position. They come to you for knowledge and guidance and you don't know. But how can you know? What are you basing it on? You have one student who did it in 2 months and one who did it in 6. One in 4.5 and one in 7. They began at different starting points. So do you just add them together and divide by the number of students? It's kind of frustrating.
But now I have a clear answer. Practice my method for a few sessions and I can tell you.
It's very simple, now that all the tools are there. Second grade math really.
Say you start at 90 degrees. And say at the end of the session you are at 110. Next workout you start at 95. That's 5 degrees. Next one you start at 98, that's 3 degrees. Next one you start at 102. That's 4 degrees progress. So we are calculating when you will start at 180 (as opposed to end at 180, when warmed up). We can say: 5+3+4=12 and 12/3=4. So you will progress on average 4 degrees per session. 180 (Goal) - 90 (where you start now) =90 (how many degrees left) 90/4=22.5, say 23. That is 23 sessions. If you train every other day, that is 46 days.
Knowing "the future" or "how long", helps students a lot. Even if they progress 1.5 degrees a session, they still like knowing approximately when they can upload a picture of themselves doing a full split on their Instagram or Facebook.
So this is the story of this method.
If you want to be the "Fast Splits Teacher", to your students or to yourself, here is what you get when you order this certification:
30 Lessons. Which includes a bonus. Free Original EasyFlexibility Training Certification (EFTC)
This is a foundations to general Kinesiological Stretching Techniques and we want you to have it, as a bonus.
If you are interested in the course. Here is a very short summary of what it contains:
Below you will find a brief description of the course contents:
1- Anatomy and Kinesiology of Splits
In this course you will learn the latest scientific approaches to mastering all 3 splits. The first lesson is an in-depth kinesiological analysis for each split: true front, open front and side splits. You will also get an overview of the modalities and combination of techniques used in the course.
2- Splits Specific Conditioning
Proper Conditioning allows the muscles "to listen to you", recover quicker, and minimize the chance of injuries if you were to overdo on something. In this second lesson we present 3 different difficulty level workouts for the purposes just mentioned. While the focus is on the lower body, upper body is also targeted.
3- Warm Up for Splits Training
While this sounds simple and self explanatory, not all warm ups are the same. Jumping jacks or jump rope is better than no warm up at all, but it's not as effective as split specific warm up. So we made a full lesson on this.
4- Kinesiological Stretching Techniques
These techniques break each split into the individual muscles participating in each split. They are then targeted one by one, using special exercises. Lessons 3, 6 and 9 focus on each individual split.
5- Movement and Habituation Techniques
Once the body is warmed up and muscles are stretched, movement takes place in the newly formed range, for the neuromuscular and nervous system to accept the new position as normal and comfortable.
6- Reciprocal Inhibition and Alternating Contract Release
These techniques trick the mechanisms that prevent stretching, allowing the joint angles to open up. A 17 minute long lesson containing over 10 exercises show you how to do this.
7- Specialized Strength Exercises (Extended Length Conditioning, Antagonist Short Length Conditioning and Peripheral Conditioning)
These exercises develop strength for various muscles participating in the splits. Depending on their position, they may be contracting in short, long or neutral ranges. Overall these exercises develop pliability (more flexibility at the start of the workout and faster progress to deep ranges). They also allow to move past the deep ranges. Lessons 4, 7 and 10 teach the strength techniques for each split.
8- Sample Lessons
We recorded 9 full lessons, 3 for each kind of split. This lesson were made so that you see several different practical applications of the techniques in real life contexts and with people from different skill levels and backgrounds.
9- Relaxed Stretching: Cool Down Routines
It is not recommended to try to increase flexibility every day. In other words Kinesiological Stretching techniques and other techniques that amplify flexibility should not be done 7 days a week. However relaxed stretches should be performed to cool down and speed up recovery. You will learn how to do this, and you will be able to pick 3 different difficulty levels.
* Special Bonus *
As a bonus we are giving away our Routine Planner Application.
The application helps you create perfect lesson plans in seconds. You can use the vast variety of exercises we teach or get creative and add your own, based on the concepts learned in the course. All the exercises are listed by categories and you can quickly select them, without having to memorize each one. All the cues and directions are right at your fingertips:
You can vary the programs and keep them fresh and fun at the click of a button. The awesome thing is, the "Automatic Routine!" button will create the whole routine, including warmup, stretches, strengthening, movement exercises and cool down by selecting the difficulty level or by letting the application pick the exercises randomly. It will take a few seconds to build it and it will give you a PDF file ready to print out or carry with you in your phone or tablet.