Warm up your body before doing any exercises for the splits.
Splits aren't just the ultimate display of flexibility, they offer a stretching exercise that can be found in activities such as ballet, gymnastics, karate and yoga. Though seen often, being able to execute a full split isn't always that easy. However, after doing several preparation exercises, you may soon be able to reach your split goals. Each stretch should be held for about 30 to 60 seconds and repeated two to six times to see progress.
Hip Flexor Stretch
Having stretched out hip flexors are essential for any type of split you attempt. To stretch them out, lie down with your back with your ribs flat on the floor. Your legs should be extended with your feet in turned out in first position. Your arms should be kept straight to each side with your palms on the floor. While keeping your feet in first position, pull your knees up sideways until you feel a stretch in your hips. Your pelvis should be slightly elevated.
Having tight hamstrings and a stiff back won't be of any help when you are trying to master your splits. To stretch them out, sit on the floor with your feet extended straight in front of you and flexed. Grab your feet with your hands and slowly lean forward while keeping your back flat. Refrain from slouching your neck and shoulders. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds, release and than repeat two more times.
Seated Straddle Stretch
Straddle stretches are essential for practicing your side splits. To begin, sit on the ground with your legs straight in front of you and then extend your legs to either side of you with your feet flexed. While keeping your spine straight and your hips slightly rolled forward, slowly lower your chest as far as you can towards the ground. Hold the position for 30 seconds and then release. Repeat the stretch by lowering your chest again, trying to get it a bit further than you did the first time. If you feel comfortable, extend your legs a bit further to your sides. Over time, you'll be able to do a full side split and get your chest all the way to the ground.
Pigeon Stretch for Quads and Hamstrings
The pigeon stretch is an exercise to do in preparation for front splits. Begin on the floor with one leg folded in front of you and the foot tucked underneath your groin area. Your other leg should be fully extended behind you and kept straight. Lift your hands over your head and bend backwards through the spine and then forward. Practice the stretch on both sides. After several weeks of doing pigeon stretches, you should be ready to start attempting a full split by slowly extending the front leg directly in front of you.