-Increase flexibility. Flexible muscles will improve your daily performance. Tasks such as lifting packages, bending or bending to the ground, running to catch the bus will become easier tasks.
-Stretching increases the percentage of movement of our joints. A greater range of motion will improve your balance, mobility and make you more resistant to possible injury – especially as we get older.
-Stretching improves circulation. Improves blood circulation to muscles. Better circulation translates to better recovery after muscle injuries.
-Stretching promotes a more favorable body position. Stretching regularly prevents your muscles from stiffening, allowing you to maintain a more optimized position and minimizing pain.
-Stretching can reduce stress. Stretching relaxes muscles that are in tension that are often accompanied by states of stress.
-Stretching can prevent injury. Preparing your muscles and joints for any type of activity can protect you from injury, especially if your muscles and joints are tight.
Ready, set, stretch!
Work different muscle groups. When stretching, pay special attention to the thighs, hips, calves, lower back, neck, and shoulders. It also stretches those muscles that you use often at work, sports or training.
Heat first. Stretching when your muscles are cold will increase your risk of injury, including pulled muscles. To warm up, walk for a period of time while moving your arms or else do your favorite exercise for five minutes at a moderate / low intensity. A word of caution: if you plan on stretching after your training, increase the intensity of your training more progressively and gently, if on the other hand, you have stretched before training, train as usual.
Hold each stretch for at least 30 seconds – it takes time to safely stretch muscles – and up to 60 seconds for very tight or problem areas. It may seem like a long time, so keep an eye on the time. Repeat each stretch for the opposite muscle. For most muscle groups, a simple stretch of adequate duration is sufficient.
Don’t bounce! Avoid it completely, these bounces can cause small fissures in the muscle. If these fissures don’t heal well, they can end up leaving a scar, leaving the muscle tighter – making you stiffer and more prone to pain.
Try to do stretching sessions “without pain.” Don’t be surprised to notice tension in your muscles when you stretch. If it hurts, you are overstretching. Go back to the point where you don’t notice any pain and kill the position.
Relax and breathe lightly. Don’t hold your breath during your stretching session – how many times you stretch per week is up to you. As a general rule, stretch every time you train. If you don’t train regularly, stretch at least 3 times a week to stay flexible. If you have a problem area, such as stiffness in the back or leg, it is preferable to stretch once or even twice a day. Know when to stretch. You can stretch anywhere and anytime – at home, at work, or when you’re working. If you have a chronic injury, consider some modifications to your stretching. For example, if you have a muscle strain, stretching it as you normally do can cause more damage. Contact your doctor or your physiotherapist for advice in these cases.
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