Stretching is another form of physical exercise, where one flexes or stretches any specific tendon or muscle deliberately. Stretching can offer a lot of benefits to the body, including, flexibility, range of motion and as well as increase in overall muscle control.
It is also being used for therapeutic relief to subside pain from cramps.
When stretching is completely done the proper way, surely you will be amazed of all the help and support it can offer your body and your exercises, thus if you want more benefits, you better do your homework and know stretching a little bit more.
There are important facts you need to know about stretching to ensure that you can get and even maximize the benefits that stretching can provide.
1. Increases Your Flexibility
I have been doing for some time now. And Yoga has helped me become very flexible. Increasing your overall flexibility can help you prevent any possible injuries you may get out of the usual exercises or stretching you do.
Moreover, increasing your flexibility is important to ensure that all muscles are being stretched to give you extra strength and size. The different exercises included on your workout, adding to that is the hydration, nutrition and your lifestyle choices can offer big impact on your overall flexibility, thus better be watchful to these important factors.
Flexibility is something you can achieve in some yoga exercises and stretching. Actually, yoga increases one’s flexibility, thus highly recommended and something that one should do on a regular basis.
2. The Right Time to Stretch
The right time to stretch is actually anytime you feel like stretching. Stretch anytime you feel like muscles need some stretching, it can be from long time of sitting, standing or a stationary position. Stretching can as well be done once you wake up, before hitting the bed or even in between break at work. I combine it with Yoga so I mostly do it in the morning.
It is a common knowledge to all that stretching should be done before exercise, actually, not a requirement or something that is not a must for one to do before they exercise. Actually, it is highly recommended to do your stretching after exercise instead. Body is highly more flexible after exercise. Stretching after your exercise is a good way to end your workout.
3. Swap Out Stretching
Instead of the usual static stretching you do, might as well do other activities that can offer you better warm up. There are better means to warm up than stretching, like for running, a good warm up can be brisk walking, leg swings etc. Starting with having a mimic, of what exercise you are about to do, on a slower manner can provide you better warm up than stretching. Again Yoga is my favorite.
4. All Stretch Differently
It is a must that when you do your stretching, you allow all parts of your body be stretched. All muscle groups should be stretched or warmed up. Stretch all parts of your body, do not focus on particular body parts as all should be stretched well, including the most neglected area, which is the neck. If you do your stretching, make sure that all parts of the body are stretched.
5. Stretching Can Cause Injury
Yes, definitely. Anything that is more than what is recommended and allowed can cause you injury. Pushing yourself to stretch may strain your muscles instead of giving it a good sensation. If you are not in the right position, you may as well get sprained, it can be ankle sprain, waist etc. Use the right technique and position your body right before stretching.
6. Stretching is 3 Dimensional
Actually, this is a new approach in stretching; the usual approach of people as they stretch can come too basic, that the overall benefit of stretching is not being achieved.
For some they thought, that stretching is just for the purpose of increasing flexibility, little they know that stretching can offer more than that. A 3D approach to stretching can give you everything that stretching can offer. 3D stretching can be highly beneficial to effectiveness of post and pre workout.
It is only necessary that those who stretch utilize the information that each muscle in your body performs three different movements over three different planes of motion. The muscles can be moved in frontal, transverse or rotational or sagittal planes. Maximize the possible benefit that stretching can provide.
Additional tip – Keep Stretching Balanced
Here is something you need to know: there is a proper way to stretch.
It is necessary that one finds the balance of their stretching with flexibility training. Each individual has their different flexibility balance, and thus it is only necessary that one should find theirs.
Finding your own perfect balance is needed to ensure that you are keeping up with the stretching you do. Listen to what your body is saying, and from there you would know what is the maximum you can reach and which amongst the position will give you a balanced stretching.
Author Bio: Meera Watts is a yoga teacher, entrepreneur and mom. Her writing on yoga and holistic health has appeared in Elephant Journal, Yoganonymous, OMtimes and others. She’s also the founder and owner of Siddhi Yoga International, a yoga teacher training school based in Singapore. Siddhi Yoga runs intensive, residential trainings in India (Rishikesh, Goa and Dharamshala), Indonesia (Bali) and Malaysia (Kuala Lumpur).