Why it is important to stretch before and after a workout
We’re all guilty of skipping a warm up and a warm down from time to time. Little do we know that we aren’t doing our muscles any favours.
Stretching allows your joints to become more flexible, inhibiting a full range of motion. Some exercises / sports require more flexibility than others. It is important to concentrate on the main muscle groups which are going to be used or have been used during exercise.
Warming up such consist of light, aerobic exercise containing stretching movements, preparing the body for a work out. It is important to increase the heart rate slowly and steadily. This will help loosen the muscles so they will feel less tight whist exercising.
So, what does stretching actually do for us?
- Relaxes the body, relieving tension build up in the muscles
- Allows you to increase your range of movement
- Reduces the risk of developing back problems
- Promotes circulation
- Reduces soreness experienced in the muscles post exercise
Post exercise, it is a good idea to stretch whilst your muscles are still warm. Not only will stretching after exercising reduce your likelihood of injury, but it will give your body a chance to slow its heart rate slowly.