Now that you have worked out and ate healthy, it’s time to stretch! Here are the top reasons to stretch and myths about stretching!
Top Reasons to Stretch
1. Increases flexibility, creating more energy-efficient movements.
2. Improves range of motion, slowing the breakdown of joints.
3. Reduces the risk of injury.
4. Reduces tension to promote relaxation.
5. Decreases post-workout muscle soreness.
6. Improves posture by keeping you in better alignment.
7. Promotes circulation.
8. Lowers the risk of back pain by keeping the hamstring muscles loose.
Myths About Stretching
“Stretching counts as a warm-up.”
Stretching a cold muscle can result in a pull or tear. You should always engage in a quick 5-10 minute warm-up lke walking or biking, prior to stretching.
“It’s natural to hold your breath while stretching.”
You should try to breathe normally while you are holding a stretch. This will help you to relax and allow the stretch to do its job.
“It is okay to feel pain during a stretch.”
You do not want to push your muscles past their natural limits. You only want to feel a slight discomfort. If you can’t relax, you are stretching too far.
“Everyone has the same level of flexibility.”
You shouldn’t compare yourself with others when it comes to stretching. We all have different degrees of flexibility. Comparisons can lead to over stretching and injury.