Think about the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning. You open your eyes, exalt a loud yawn and stretch for the skies. Stretching in the morning helps promote blood flow to your muscles, which is essential for our breathing, our hearts, and our stress levels. Stretching feels good, and it also helps prevent injuries because it activates your body’s joints and helps them perform with full efficiency. Here are five ways you can improve your stretches before you decide to work out:
Stretches Shouldn’t Hurt; They Should Relieve Tension
One of the biggest mistake’s individuals make when stretching is that they expect it to hurt, or they want to look for pain in their stretching. When stretching you should expect to feel pressure or tightness, but if you’re holding a stretch that is making you feel pain and grimace, release the stretch and try again. When you start getting to the point where you can feel your muscles extending release the stretch if you begin feeling pain.
Depending on Your Exercise, Target Specific Body Parts
Stretching your entire body is good practice, but it is incredibly pertinent to focus on the muscle groups which you will be exercising throughout your workout. For example, it is important to stretch your arms and back before doing a leg workout, but do not solely focus on your upper body. Pay close attention to your legs, your hamstrings, calve muscles, and your quadriceps.
Ensure You Maintain A Stretch
If you’re stretching each muscle group ten seconds at a time, your muscles won’t be able to expand which could perpetuate injuries or body aches adequately. Whatever muscle group you’re stretching, be sure to hold form for about 45 seconds to a minute. Focus on your breathing and ensure you are sending optimal levels of oxygen throughout your body to promote blood flow.
Stay Still While Stretching
It is vital to relax your body while stretching and to hold that stretch for an extended amount of time. Commonly, individuals stretching before a workout may get bored or lazy while stretching and tend to bounce or sway their bodies. Unfortunately, if you aren’t staying still and relaxed in your stretches, you can do more harm than good. You may accidentally knock a stretched muscle out of joint, and it may lead to muscle restraint.
Learning to stretch is as much of a skill as learning proper form and technique is for working out. Stretching is imperative to help you attain physical health goals such as losing weight, gaining muscle mass or toning your body. Stretching doesn’t need to be boring; in fact, there are plenty of activities that encourage healthy stretching including Pilates and yoga. Ensure that when you stretch that you aren’t hurting yourself, target specific muscle groups based on your upcoming workout, hold your stretch and refrain from bouncing around when you stretch. Improving the way, you stretch will improve the results you see.