You can stretch at any time and in any place. Simply follow these guidelines to do the task safely and effectively. You already know how vital exercising is, but what about stretching? Is stretching an afterthought in your workout routine? Not so fast, my friend. Among other things, stretching can help you enhance your range of motion and reduce your risk of injury. Learn why stretching is beneficial and how to stretch properly.
Advantages of Stretching
The outcomes of studies on the benefits of stretching have been varied. Stretching does not appear to lessen muscular discomfort after exercise, according to several studies. Other research suggests that stretching the muscle and retaining the stretch right before a sprint will marginally reduce performance.
Stretching, on the other hand, has been found to enhance flexibility and, as a result, joint range of motion.
Better flexibility may:
- Help your joints move through their entire range of motion
- Increase muscle blood flow
- Improve your physical performance
- Reduce your chance of injury
- Allow your muscles to work more efficiently
- Improve your capacity to do daily chores
You may realize to appreciate the ritual of stretching before or after hiking, dancing or sports.
Before you start stretching, make sure you’re doing it properly and safely. While stretching can be done at any time and in any location, appropriate technique is essential. Stretching incorrectly might potentially be detrimental to your health.
Here are some tips to keep stretching safe:
- Do not use stretching as a warm-up. If you strain cold muscles, you risk injuring yourself. Warm up for 5 to 10 minutes with low-intensity walking, jogging, or biking before stretching. Stretching after an exercise, when your muscles are warm, is even better.
- Make an effort to achieve symmetry. Flexibility is a hereditary trait that differs from person to person. Instead of aiming for the flexibility of a dancer or gymnast, concentrate on having equal flexibility on all sides of your body (especially if you have a history of a previous injury). Flexibility that isn’t equal on both sides could put you in danger of harm.
- Concentrate on the primary muscle groups. Stretch your calves, thighs, hips, lower back, neck, and shoulders, among other important muscle groups. Make sure you extend all sides of your body. Also, stretch muscles and joints that you utilize on a regular basis or in your sport.
- Avoid bouncing. Stretch in a smooth, non-bouncing motion. Bouncing when stretching can cause muscle injury and add to muscle tension.
- Maintain your stretch. Breathe normally and hold each stretch for 30 seconds. If you have a problem area, you may need to hold for 60 seconds.
- Don’t aim for pain. Expect to feel tension while you’re stretching, not pain. If it hurts, you’ve pushed too far. Back off to the point where you don’t feel any pain, then hold the stretch.
- Maintain your stretching routine. Stretching can take a long time. Performing this routine frequently, at least two to three times a week, will provide the biggest benefits. Stretching for 5 to 10 minutes at a time can be beneficial. If you don’t stretch on a regular basis, you risk losing out on the possible benefits. If stretching helped you expand your range of motion, it’s possible that if you stop, your range of motion will diminish.
- Bring movement into your stretching. Tai chi, Pilates and yoga are examples of gentle motions that can help you be more flexible in specific activities. These types of workouts can also help older adults avoid falling. Try doing a “dynamic warm-up” as well. A dynamic warmup is executing low-intensity motions that are similar to those found in your specific sport or physical activity. Then, as you warm up, you gradually increase the speed and intensity.
Some people may also choose to add foam rolling before working out along with a dynamic warm up.
Know when to exercise caution
Don’t forget, stretching doesn’t mean you won’t get injured. This activity won’t prevent an overuse injury.
You may need to change your stretching techniques if you have a chronic disease or an injury. For example, if you already have a strained muscle, stretching it could make it worse. If you have any health issues, talk to your doctor or physical therapist about the best technique to stretch.
Stretch & Recovery is LIFE!
Whether you live an active or inactive lifestyle, lift weights, are an athlete, or are a stay-at-home mom, sit too long, are on your feet all day, stare at computer/phone screens, don’t exercise enough, or exercise too much, for all fitness levels, all sports, all ages, female or male…Stretch & Recovery Therapy is for EVERYONE!
WHY WORKING WITH A RECOVERY THERAPIST IS IMPORTANT
- While stretching and healing at home is beneficial, it is insufficient to provide you with the relief you require.
- You won’t be able to perform several stretches and rehabilitation therapies without the help of a certified recovery therapist. A professional recovery therapist will assist you in obtaining the relief you require while also preventing your aches, pains, and tension from reappearing.
REACH’s 2 STEP APPROACH TO RECOVERY THERAPY
1. IDENTIFY THE ROOT CAUSES OF YOUR ACHES AND PAINS
At Reach, we start your Stretch and Recovery journey with your Mobility Risk Factor Assessment. This assessment allows us to pinpoint the causes of your aches and pains, muscle imbalances and weakness, and posture or mobility limitations. After your assessment, we can proceed to step 2!
2. CUSTOMIZE YOUR RECOVERY THERAPY PROGRAM
Based on your Mobility Risk Factor Assessment, a custom Stretch & Recovery therapy plan will be created. The program is designed just for you and will target your areas of concern and interest. Each session includes a balanced blend of Corrective Stretch, Percussion, Compression, CBD, and Heat Vibration Therapy. This takes the guesswork out of choosing the Stretch and Recovery therapies that will be best for you!