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Watching Shaolin Monks Stretch Is A Truly Alarming Experience

DECEMBER 1, 2017  —  By Matthew Derrick  
Matthew Derrick

Matthew Derrick

Writer and sassy ginger currently residing in central Pennsylvania. Matt spends most of his free time online shopping for clothing that he doesn't need, perfecting the art of eye-rolling, and indulging in all forms of pop culture.

As a young boy, every time I would see or hear about Shaolin monks in movies, for whatever reason, I would associate them with magic.

And while the monks themselves may not have magical powers, there's definitely something magical in the way they stretch and contort their bodies into just about every shape and position. At the heart of their quest for peace and tranquility is a lot and lot of dynamic stretching.

These stretches involve opening up the hips and warming up the leg muscles and have been performed by Shaolin monks for thousands of years. Not only are these stretching exercises incredibly helpful to their health and wellness, but they're also amazing to watch.

While some of their stretching poses look like something you'd do before a sporting event...

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...others will leave you speechless at the many ways the monks can twist and contort their bodies.

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Their flexibility is unlike anything you've ever seen before.

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And at the heart of their stretching is many basic kung fu moves that help show off the monks' incredible techniques.

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The monks' stretching routines are so renowned that others have begun incorporating their moves into their workouts.

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I can't even attend a simple yoga class without looking like a bull in a china shop, so I can't even imagine trying to do this. What do you think? Amazing, cringe-worthy, or both?

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