How to Touch Your Toes (The 4 Best Stretches to Improve Flexibility)

Its time to discover how to touch your toes!

What makes me so confident youll be able to reach your little piggy wiggies?

Because we teach even the most “inflexible” of folks how to touch their toes in our 1-on-1 Online Coaching Program, and well show you all our tricks listed below.

Wish to end up being more flexible? A Nerd Fitness Coach can develop a strategy to make it occur!

Heres what well cover in our guide, How to Touch Your Toes:

The Benefits of Being Able to Touch Your Toes.

Youre gon na need to extend if you want to increase your versatility. [1] Its how you make your muscles flexible and strong.

Its time to become bendy like Gumby!.

Lets get started.

Why bother? Whats the big deal about having the ability to touch your toes?

If you suffer from back discomfort, it might be worth starting an extending routine. The muscles in your back may be tight, limiting your variety of motion, which triggers discomfort. Extending can help loosen up the area, plus reinforce the muscle.

Touching your toes might have been a battle for you then. It may still be a struggle for you now.

If you want to stop slumping over so much, routinely extending may help. Extending works to improve muscle imbalances, which in turn might help your posture.

Here are some of the benefits supplied by extending:.

While there are numerous indications of good versatility, among the most popular is unquestionably having the ability to touch your toes.

Extending, and the flexibility that comes with it, should not be ignored when developing a workout regimen..

If you can move a joint through its full variety of motion, youre gon na have more flexibility of motion. With confidence navigating the physical world is a sign of a healthy nerd, which is why flexibility shouldnt be overlooked. One of the finest methods to become more flexible is to extend.

After all, it was so essential the President had all American schoolchildren carry out the “Sit and Reach” test to see if they might get their feet. [5]

Whats going on?

Why Cant I Touch My Toes?

If you are not able to touch your toes, its more than likely due to the fact that of among these 4 major factors:.

1) Shortened/tight posterior chain muscles. Although many people believe not being able to touch our toes just indicates your hamstring muscles are inflexible, in truth our entire system (consisting of the lower back) can play a huge function too! As Mark Rippetoe discusses in this video about the Romanian deadlift, what you might believe is a lower back concern is likewise a hamstring issue (and vice versa):.

Weak movement points in one place in the system can end up being incapacitating (and frequently simple to spot) when we do compound motions like the deadlift.

If youre somebody who sits at a desk all day and struggles to touch your toes, you most likely arent enhancing or extending these muscles due to the fact that the chair is doing all of the work for you.

You see, the posterior chain is an interconnected series of muscles that includes our back muscles, erector spinae (muscles along our spine), lower back muscles, hamstrings, and butts:.

2) You have reasonably long legs compared to your upper body and arms. People with long legs and short upper bodies will have a higher obstacle than people who have short legs and long torsos and arms.

If you are overweight and take place to have a huge stomach, it can definitely make touching ones toes more challenging. This may be an aspect in making it much easier to touch your toes.

However fear not, you too can level up and get those toes touched.

Your muscles act like rubber bands; the more they are used, the more they are warmed-up, and the more they can stretch. This is why we encourage individuals to go through a mobility warm-up prior to exercise!

Lets put a plan in location to finally touch our toes!

As Peter Drucker stated, “That which gets determined gets handled.” Or in this case, that which gets determined gets more flexible!.

Determining Your Initial Flexibility (We All Start Somewhere).

Before we can implement a technique to establish more flexibility that permits you to touch your toes, we need to know your starting point.

The following comes from our complimentary 5-Day Flexibility Series, which you can sign up for today!

Actively extending your muscles JUST past the point of comfort. Like strength training by adding 1 representative or a few pounds to an exercise, we want to extend just beyond the point where we extended last time so our muscles need to elongate.

Through each of the motions listed below, ensure you are breathing gradually and progressively.

Let your body rest naturally, as if you were a ragdoll. Keeping your hands fairly close together, correct your fingers and begin to extend down gradually to the ground.
Do this 2-3 times to get heated up. Attempt to keep your legs straight by flexing or activating your quads; keep your legs directly, without locking your knees.
Besides the microbend, do not flex your knees to assist you get closer to the ground! Im viewing you. Note that depending on your body (and your hamstrings) your legs might not look 100% directly if youre videotaping yourself on these to track your development.

You can even spread these motions out throughout your day– I like to do them after I work out. After a long day at a desk, after driving, or upon waking up are all great times to work on flexibility!

Tape-record your measurement in a document or on a notepad (if youre part of the versatility obstacle, we have a file you can print out), and/or conserve the photo/video to demonstrate how far down you are reaching.

You can follow together with all of the motions below that come from our really enjoyable online course, Nerd Fitness Yoga (part of NF Prime). Its essentially yoga for individuals that dont do yoga.



Have a buddy measure the distance from the tip of your fingers to the ground if you arent touching the ground. If you dont have a pal with you, place your hands on your legs and note where the ideas of your fingers end up.
If you can touch the ground, youll wish to flatten your hands as much as possible, and record the distance from the top of your head to the ground. As you can stretch even more, the top of your head will actually get closer and closer to the ground.
Attempt hugging your calves and pulling your head in towards your body if this seems easy.

When you are prepared, reach towards the ground and hold it for a couple of seconds. Measure the distance in among the following methods:.

Standing toe touch stretch– 30 seconds.
Cat/Camel– 30 seconds (switch positions every 5 seconds).
Star stretch– 30 seconds (as numerous sluggish associates as you can).
Moon the sky– 30 seconds (as numerous sluggish representatives as you can).

The 4 Best Stretches to Touch Your Toes (Improve Your versatility).

In less time than it takes to update your Facebook status, you could be touching your toes and make Gumby proud.

Constant practice and effort! You cant enhance your versatility by stretching for 5 minutes once a month. You d be much better off stretching for 30 seconds expanded 10 times throughout the month.

There are two crucial factors that will figure out whether you are effective in acquiring the capability to touch your toes as you practice over the next couple of weeks:.

Thats right. Studies verified that actively focusing on touching your toes for 30 seconds, 3 times each week was enough to lengthen hamstring muscles in 4 weeks. [6]

Im sure theres an unsuitable joke to be made here about 30 seconds of effort, however Im better than that (I believe).


Stand straight with your legs about hip-width apart. You desire your legs to be directly, but do not strongly lock out your knees either (this feels like a “microbend” to a great deal of people).
Begin by flexing and leaning forward towards the ground with your quads (front of your legs).

And I understand you have time.

1) Standing toe touch stretch: Flex/activate the front of your legs, keep them directly, and bend over at the waist juuuust past the point of discomfort; hold that position for 30 seconds. Repeat this procedure every other day and hold it for 30 seconds.

2) We can loosen up a tight lower back by doing 30 seconds of returning and forth every couple of seconds by doing a “feline” and then a “cow”:.

3) You can likewise do what we call a star stretch to help extend those legs out! Stand with your legs spread wide, and arms extended (thus the term Star!), and then reach down with one hand to your opposite leg; hold for 5 seconds, back to start, and repeat with the other leg.

4) Heres another favorite motion of mine that assists enhance my versatility and mobility: the “Moon the Sky” stretch!

This is an excellent stretch to blend into your pre-workout warmup to get your legs, butt, and back gotten ready for work:.

Crouch down and put your hands under your feet.
Slowly move your butt up with your hands staying under your feet.
Raise your butt and try to correct your legs.
Go a TEENY bit greater each time until you can totally align your legs!

For any of the above moves, a great way to inspect your form would be to tape-record a video of yourself and match it against the videos and gifs here. If they look close, youre doing fantastic!

If you desire to have a professional review your stretches, our coaches can do simply that in our snazzy app!

How to Become More Flexible (Next Steps).

Have a Nerd Fitness Coach help you touch your toes! Learn more here.

Its now time to train to touch your toes!

Check your toe-touching abilities before and after doing the 2-minutes of exercise above, and I wager youll discover a distinction right now– just wait to see what you can accomplish in a couple of weeks!

The cool aspect of flexibility is that any mix of the stretches above will assist you enhance your flexibility as long as you consistently deal with it a small bit every day.

When I awaken.
After I work out.
Throughout my day (when working at my desk).
At the end of my day for a minute or more before bed.

I do movement work:.

All built up, its less than 5 minutes of time, but its adequate to reveal me some outcomes!

If you follow our guide above, youll be well on your way to increasing your versatility and touching your toesie wosies.

You just need to start!

Want some assistance starting? A little extra push out the door?.

We built three perfect next actions for increasing your flexibility!

# 1) Work with a professional Yoda! Inspect out our popular 1-on-1 Coaching Program if you desire self-confidence that youre following a program that is tailor-made for your busy life, scenario, and objectives.

A number of our customers have actually “increased versatility” as one of their fitness objectives, and they bask understanding a licensed NF instructor is directing them there..

Our training program modifications lives! Find out more here.

# 2) Want to take part in our Mobility Group Challenges? That method you can work on touching your toes with others? Join Nerd Fitness Prime!

Nerd Fitness Prime is our premium subscription program which contains at-home workout routines, live-streamed exercises with NF Coaches, group difficulties, a helpful online neighborhood, and much more!.

Find out more about Nerd Fitness Prime!

Now, your turn:.

That need to practically do it for our guide on How to Touch Your Toes.

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Can you touch your toes?

Does attempting to “sit and reach” revive horrors from elementary school?

Any other suggestions or techniques for movement training?

Let us know in the remarks!


Studies verified that actively focusing on touching your toes for 30 seconds, 3 times per week was enough to lengthen hamstring muscles in 4 weeks. That way you can work on touching your toes with others?

Picture credit: toe touch, posterior chain, holler, yoga sundown, the adventures of Gumby and R2D2, Stormtroopers and Gumby.

A lot of people believe not being able to touch our toes simply implies your hamstring muscles are inflexible, in reality our whole system (consisting of the lower back) can play a substantial function! If you are overweight and occur to have a big stomach, it can certainly make touching ones toes more difficult. This may be an aspect in making it much easier to touch your toes.

GIF credit: banana, Danny Devito, gumby, patrick.

PS: Make sure you take a look at the rest of our Mobility Training series:.

– Steve.