Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A little something to keep you going..

Here is a video from the howtostretch membership site. I will do more short videos to keep folks stretching until the site is launched.


Monday, December 21, 2009


Well, I got some good news and some bad:
The good news: I have at least a months worth of classes.

The bad news: My file transfers fail. After upgrading my computer, my hosting server, and getting extra storage, the problem I am having is unreliable transfer of large files. Sometimes it does work, most times not. Tech Support has recommended another file upload client, Firezilla. This week I am dumping all unneccessary data to speed uploads.

So, again, please be patient and hang in there! I will try to get a few Youtube videos up to keep you s t r e t c h e d out until the new membership area opens.

Friday, December 4, 2009


I really, really wanted to launch the new long videos the first week of December. It currently takes a day (almost 20 continuous hours) to compress a 30 min video to a format that can be uploaded to my server.

What does that mean? At best, I can do a video a day, I have about ten edited, many more to edit, I guess I will start getting stuff up in the next few weeks. I will post my progress. So, I shoot a video (45 min) edit a video (1 hr) compress video (20 plus hours), load video to website, (does not take long, make a few minutes), whew.

check back, in the meantime, ask any questions, and practice what's up on the youtube channel. :0)

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Need some help

Good morning, I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving weekend. I am in need of a little help. I am currrently converting the first class, free for viewers, to a format that can be easily viewed. The conversion process is taking longer than anticipated (almost a day for 30 min of video compression), but from what I read, that can be normal.

When I get it uploaded, I need a few volunteers to view the video (it will be uploaded to howtostretch.com), and email me on how the video looks on their computer.

You can email me at howtostretch@howtostretch.com, and let me know if you would do that for me. (folks will be viewing the video, I just want to line up some viewers willing to give me a little feedback on view quality, etc).

Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanks for your patience

As I type, I am converting the first stretch class to a different format for my server. This compresses the file so when it is uploaded, many people can view it at once. This was a step I have been working on for a few weeks. Now that I ironed out the process, we are closer to getting my online classes live!

Check back, or check my homepage over the next few days. I hope to get it up by Sunday at the latest.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Free Stretch Class

This weekend I should have the Free Stretch Class edited and uploaded to howtostretch.com. This will let you take a sample class with me. Just a taste of things to come.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Closer still

Just an update on what is going on at howtostretch.com. I have the software installed to allow membership, but need to configure it to my needs. This part will take a few days. I have a few videos (30 min long) ready, they still need a little editing touchup and compression. Even before I can set this up, those videos need to be tested to make sure everyone can see them. As it stands, your computer will need Quicktime to view them. You can get Quicktime for free, so if you don't currently have that software, viewing will not be a problem.
I need to install some new RAM I just purchased as well (I cannot believe how cheap 512 of RAM is these days), but that's just to make things easier and a little faster on my end.
Stay tuned, lots of fun stuff ahead.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

How to get into Side Splits

Until the website is fully configured with the longer videos, I will keep posting to youtube. Here's the latest for you to work on.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Closer still....

I worked on the videos that will be on the membership site, and got them to upload and run as planned. A lot of little steps I never did before (conversion factors, compression, etc), that were not necessary when I upload to youtube, that I did not know about. I do now :0).

My host server is upgraded to a size that can hold all the videos. Things are rolling along!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

The process so far

I have had to do a fair amount of work (who am I kidding, lots of work) to get this project of having a curriculum of classes on the web. Been staying up till the wee hours of the morning sorting out the details. I needed to update my OS to run Quicktime Pro, to have options for video conversions. I can upload the videos in either .mov or MPEG4 files, still playing with which one is going to work better. (if you have any suggestions, I am all ears).
I have been playing with upload options, and I am going to have to increase the storage capacity on my server to hold all the videos ( I have a lot of material. I taught for over several decades!)
I can only upload the membership software and videos after I upgrade my storage. Every day I get two or three things done. Funny thing, as I finish one thing, I see another that I want/need to do, to have this work out as seemlessly as possible for members.
Will keep you updated, keep checking back!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Letting the cat out of the bag......

so to speak. I am hard at work on my new project, which will be of great interest to those of you who want a more "hands on" experience with me. I am adding a membership portion to my website, and there will be a whole curriculum of stretch classes. Each class will be 30 minutes long, and I will cover many topics. I will also have a curriculum of classes in Tai Chi Chuan, where I will teach the first 13 moves of the short form of Yang style Tai Chi.

The benefits of stretching and Tai Chi go hand in hand. Energy does not flow through locked joints. Tai Chi allows one to release joints held in improper tension. Joints that are stiff, arthritic, injured, weak, and inflexible do no lead one to greater health. Stretching opens the joints, lengthens tendons, and builds muscles in eccentric contraction. Eccentric contraction is what muscles do when you hold a stretch for a long period of time with proper posture. Your muscles get longer, flatter, and stronger, from end to end. By contrast, concentric contraction tightens the muscles from the belly, or center, of the muscle. An example of this is weight lifting. I will cover principles of weight lifting in a video as well, as it applies to stretching, Tai Chi, and energy flow.

When is all this going to happen? I have done much work on it the past few weeks, have a few bugs to work out with uploading videos, so I am estimating sometime in December. Stay tuned, check back often, and shoot me an email if you have any questions!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

A new video

Just posted this one today, you might find some info you were looking for. Also, for those new to the blog, there is a LOT of info in the archives, and on my youtube page.

Monday, October 26, 2009

A cold weather tip

Just an idea for those of you stretching in colder climates: take a little more time to stretch. When it is cold out, there is less blood supply to the smaller areas of the muscles (specifically, where the muscle attaches to the bone at its origin, and where it attaches at its endpoint, the insertion.) Go a little slower, take a little more time, be patient. If you don't have more time, do fewer stretches for longer periods.

One of the silly things I did when I was about 16, was to train in karate in the snow. Barefoot. Just wearing my uniform. I wanted to be like those Buddhist Monk Martial Arts Masters you see in the movies. I pulled a few muscles, and that was that!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

some new info

Hi! Been busy with the stretch videos over on youtube, so if you have not seen the new ones, go take a look. I have also given my website a makeover, with a lot of new content. I have upgraded my computer with a second hard drive, which means more space to do more videos and web based teaching. I didn't realize that the blog was still getting a lot of traffic, so I will stop by and update from time to time.
In the meantime, my latest:

Sunday, September 6, 2009

New Directions


I am not sure if I am going to continue with posting to this blog. More of my work is going to video, and instead of just posting the info here, it would be great if subscribers/readers of my blog just go to my youtube page and save that page in their favorite places. I have been updating with new videos every two days, more or less, it is easier for me to keep current on youtube due to time constraints (I have a day job!!)

You can visit the howtostretch youtube page here youtube, be sure to save it and check it a few times a week. There will be a LARGE catalog of videos available. The blog will stay online as an archive. Thanks for reading! (UPDATED 10/25/09, see above post!)

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

TMJ video

I know, its been too long. More to come, you may want to subscribe to my youtube page (howtostretch), I plan to do several a week to keep everyone updated.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Two new videos for you!

I am currently working on an entire catalog of videos for stretching, injury prevention and recovery. You can search youtube for howtostretch, see the videos here on my blog, or go to my website and visit the archive.

Thursday, May 21, 2009


As of now, I am canning the idea of having an interactive feature: the lack of response thusfar shows me that I would be putting in much more effort than it is worth. I will instead focus on more videos, both of the DVD and youtube variety.

In the meantime, new readers (and old!) should go and check the archives on this blog. Some of the questions asked have been topics of older blogs.

Monday, May 18, 2009

The new idea....

One of the plans is to set up an interactive interface, so I can teach people how to stretch via the internet. I have several ideas, one is in beta testing right now. I am not sure it is going to be the ideal way, but maybe it will work.

A lot of folks ask me questions about stretching, and it is hard for me to answer them without seeing them stretch. I also have a day job :0), so whatever I do, has to be time efficient for me. Answering a ton of emails individually takes up a lot of time right now. Feedback? Ideas? I would like to hear what you have to say.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Lots of new stuff coming down the pike......

OK, sorry there have been few updates, but I have been busy with projects. Go check out howtostretch.com. I updated it with easier directories, new colors, and (for the moment) did away with the frames. Let me know how you like it.

The Posture DVD is available again, you can read about it on howtostretch.com.

I have a new stretch DVD in the works right now, but it won't be ready for a few months. It will be like no other stretch DVD before it.

I have a new, top secret for now, exciting, interactive feature that will be posted in the next week or so. Be sure to check back!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

An Old video of me

Here's a video from a black belt class run by my karate teacher, Mr. Michael Masley, in 1982. I am performing a hyung (form, kata) called Chindo. It's one of my favorite forms.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

News for today...

Sorry for not posting in a while. My latest project is to take some old videos I have and convert them to digital. The one I am working on is a stretch class I taught back in 94. Many of you will be able to see details I describe on howtostretch demonstrated. I will post when it is done, will probably post it as the other videos, via youtube.

Stay tuned!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Some Historical Photos

Here are a few photos I found. In the first one, my karate teacher, Mr. Michael Masley, and I are freesparring in 1978. Mr. Masley was Dr. Sohn's top karate student/teacher. He was amazing. His flexiblity was incredible. Mr. Masley began his studies under Dr. Sohn at age 9, and by age 12, he achieved first degree black belt. At the time, (1963 or 1964 IIRC) Mr. Masley was the youngest black belt in the country. Also, he was tested by Dr. Sohn's teacher from Korea, Master Ahn Kyong Wan. Master Ahn held young Michael to ADULT standards when he was trained/tested. There were no children's classes, no pads on the hands or feet, and he had to fight (spar) adults who were instructed not to "go easy" because he was a young boy.

In the second picture, I am about to begin teaching a class, circa 1994. Note how we started the class the same as recommended under the stretch page on howtostretch.com.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Stretch or Rest a Torn Muscle?

Let' say you tore a muscle. What should you do? Well, like anything, it depends on the details. If the tear is deep, and it burns when you even approach stretching it, take time off. Massage the muscles, or get a professional massage therapist to work on it. The Homeopathic remedy Arnica Montana (30x strength) is for sore muscles and bruises, and taken as directed, can help that muscle heal. You can also get Arnica gel at the Health Food store, and rub it directly on the area.

If the tear is tolerable, I will often do stretches around the area, to loosen up any tension on the affected muscle. So, let's say I tore my hamstring. When I stand and stretch, the pain is noticeable as tension, burning, and pain. I stop the exercise, and get down on the floor and do seated hamstring stretches. I will follow up with associated hip stretches, and some quad stretches. These do not hurt the affected muscle, but since they are opposing muscles to the torn hamstring, stretching them makes the hamstring feel better because there is less tension on it.

Oh, hot baths, saunas, and steams (like at your gym) help a lot too.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

A New Year, a New Look!

Happy New Year to all. 2009 will bring a lot of changes to howtostretch.com. Now we are past the holidays, we finally shot two more videos this week, and they should be edited and uploaded soon. The website has a new look, as I rebuilding it to make it more intuitive and interactive. I might add new pictures and stretches, but I am also thinking about making all additions videos. I will think about it. Any input from our readers?
In the meantime, go check out the website. Let me know what you think!