through an increase in flowing movements and flexibility

Importance of stretching

How many people do you see stretching after training? Not many.. Stretching is so important especially after training; it increases the range of movement in a joint, decreases tension and risk of injury and increases blood flow to muscles. It may even decrease muscle soreness which is always a winner 👍🏻 if only we could all afford massages every day 😋
Improving your flexibility will allow your muscles to work through their full range of movement. A good example is the squat, to get low with good technique you need to be flexible in your hip flexors, hamstrings and calfs. This is where I struggle, I have tight hamstrings and hip flexors it’s so annoying and I stretch them every day.
Before I train legs I make sure I’ve properly warmed up my muscles and joints mainly by doing mobility exercises and some stretches then I’ll start with body weight squats.
Not only is stretching good for your body but also your mind, it provides a mental break and calm the mind. Classes like yoga and Pilates would obviously be perfect but not all of us have access/can afford or even enjoy these.
I myself like yoga sometimes but easily get bored and can’t wait for the class to finish so I prefer stretching and foam rolling…. One day I will get a massage!
Tara X

Static stretching

This is where you hold a position for more than 30 seconds in order to elongate the muscle.  This kind of stretching should be done after the activity.  These stretches are designed to target specific muscle groups one at a time to lengthen them.  When doing static stretches you should feel some tension but stay within your pain-free zone.  Do not do these kinds of stretches when your muscles are cold.

Benefit:

  • Improve muscle interactions
  • Improve flexibility
  • Relaxing both physically and mentally

Dynamic Stretching

This is an active stretch.  You are stretching through controlled movements.  Dynamic stretches should be done as a warm up.  These kinds of stretches focus on multiple muscle groups at one time.  You should feel a nice stretch and you should feel your heart rate begin to rise.

Benefit:

  • Increase blood flow to muscles
  • Increase range of motion
  • Increase awareness of joint position
  • Improve athletic performance
  • Gets you mentally prepared to workout