Exercising is one of the healthiest things you can do for your body. It aids in weight loss, boosts your immune system, and even helps relieve stress. When you exercise it’s important to stretch. Your exercise regimen isn’t complete without it. Here are a few reasons why you should schedule a few minutes at the beginning and end of your workouts:
Before your workout1
Stretching out your muscles help to boost circulation and improve the elasticity of the muscles. It will give you a better range of motion, flexibility and muscle control. By stretching, you are increasing the flow of oxygen to your muscles, which prevents cramps, aches, and pains that show up and slow down your workout. If you are someone who does not complete a workout without feeling discomfort, try stretching for at least 15 minutes beforehand – this can lead to improvements in the flow of oxygen, helping to rid your body of those aches and pains. According to the ACSM, it is recommended to stretch each major muscle group at least twice a week for 60 second holds.2
After your workout1
Your exercise regimen isn’t quite complete until you stretch out all your major muscle groups. As you break a sweat, lactic acid builds up in your muscles, which is what causes you to feel sore the next day. By following your workout with stretches, you can help alleviate that soreness and recover faster from an intense workout.
Some benefits of stretching3
- Reduces muscle tension, and makes the body feel more relaxed
- Increases range of motion
- Prevents muscle strains: a strong pre-stretched muscle resists stress better than a strong unstretched muscle
- Prevents joint strains
- Reduces the risk of back problems
- Prepares the body for strenuous exercise
- Increases ‘body awareness’
- Promotes circulation
- Increases the learning, practice, and performance of many types of movements
- Reduces muscular soreness
If you want to learn more about which stretches best suit you, schedule a session with our Personal Trainer today!
Cici Madawala, B.S.
Director of Marketing
Live Your LifeTM
Bringing Physical Therapy & Wellness to You!
Cici Madawala graduated from St Cloud State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication and minors in Geography and German.
She is passionate about helping people and strives to help individuals get back on healthy routines and do the things they love. In her leisure time, she loves to travel, and explore other cultures and cuisines
1The Best Stretches to Start Your Workout, Women’s Health Magazine, 2010, https://www.womenshealthmag.com/fitness/a20702277/stretching-exercises/. Accessed August 2,2018.
2Collins, Sonya. The Truth About Stretch, Web MD, 2014, https://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/features/how-to-stretch#2. Accessed August 2, 2018.
37 Incredible Results You Can Get From Stretching Every Day, Prevention 2016, https://www.prevention.com/fitness/a20515035/benefits-of-stretching-every-day/. Accessed August 2, 2018.