Stretching = The deliberate lengthening of muscles in order to increase muscle flexibility and joint range of motion. Routine stretching helps warm the body up, therefore decreasing injury and muscle soreness.
Some benefits of Stretching include:
Better Posture- Stretching decreases tightness therefore allowing you to maintain posture.
Stress Relief- With proper breathing this helps lessen signs of stress.
Enhanced Coordination- Stretching keeps the body in better balance therefore less falls and injury.
Increased Flexibility and Joint Range of Motion = Improved daily performance. Lifting, bending and running become much easier.
Improved Circulation- Increases blood flow to the muscles. This in turn brings nourishment and gets rid of waste byproducts in the muscle tissue. With proper circulation, this also shortens recovery time of injured muscles.
Warm up before stretching with light walking or jumping jacks, for example. Try not to stretch a cold muscle.
Hold each stretch for 30-60 seconds
DO NOT bounce while stretching. Hold and release.
Always stretch in a pain free state
Relax and breathe through each stretch. With each deep breathe try stretch further.
Always stretch both sides
Stretch before and after activity….after being the most important.