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The Benefits in stretching those muscles

Updated on April 26, 2016

Flexibility comes along with stretching

Do you really need to stretch?

Do you remember when you were a kid and in your youth sports league or P.E. class (physical education) and your teachers or coaches would always make you stretch and warm up before any activities could be performed?. Now that your a lot older, you wonder what would happen if you didn't stretch. There are those people that tend to underestimate the importance of stretching and really just go through the motions they are doing it. Then there's the question of whether you should you stretch before your workout or afterwards? If you're sore from a previous workout session, some studies have shown that post workout stretching produces little if any results in aiding in the reduction of muscle pain or soreness. However post workout stretching does help in improving your overall flexibility. Although the research on the benefits of stretching often will vary in conclusion, even if your flexibility has always been barely adequate, stretching can increase your range of motion approximately 15% almost instantly, making you more flexible. If your active in athletics/sports, flexibility can and will improve your athletic performance. It's imperative that you do not go into any run or workout cold, as this leaves you more susceptible to injury.


Benefits of stretching explained by Dr. Wishnie

Benefits of stretching

As I stated previously, there are some studies of the advantages of stretching that have shown mixed results. Everyone one is different and reacts positive, negative or not respond at all to different forms of stimulation. When you begin exercising or pre-workout, your first movements should always be done with lightweight. You should warm up with the movement you plan on starting with. This is actually more beneficial than stretching itself. This pushes blood to the joints that are going to be used and your muscles will warm and fill from the blood flow. For instance, if you plan on starting with the bench press exercise, select a light weight that you can press out at least 25 repetitions with. Other benefits of stretching that research has shown besides the increase of blood flow to the muscles are improved balance and coordination, assist in relieving lower back pains and aids in the enhancement of cardiovascular health. Muscle fibers tear during a workout and may shrink during the rebuilding/recovery stage. Stretching alleviates the shortening of the muscles. A regular stretching routine will not only lengthen your muscles but it can also make some of your other normal daily activities that much easier.


Proper stretching techniques

Stretching when your sore

Your post workout should always include some kind of stretching routine regardless of what body part you worked out that day. It's necessary to stretch out your joints, tendons, ligaments and muscle bellies on a regular basis and always following intense workouts. Extending and lengthening muscles as opposed to contracting them, stimulates the release of toxins and lactic acid. That and along with water after a workout will assist in improving recovery time and minimizes soreness. Using the proper techniques is essential. Stretching improperly can cause more damage then good. You should feel tension when you stretch, not pain. If you feel pain in your stretching routine, then you have pushed a little to far. Learning the difference between feeling tension and feeling pain is essential, especially when your muscles are already sore. Don't take stretching out of context, just because you stretch before workouts daily does not mean you can not or will not get hurt, pull a muscle, etc, but it does put your muscles in a more favorable position to perform/function at the desired level of performance. As we get older, we will naturally the lose range of motion in our joints form the muscles tightening up.


When do you stretch?

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You can do awesome things when your flexible

The Verdict: Should you stretch?

There are some studies have shown that stretching is not really advantageous and then there are those that say it is. I personally have always incorporated some type of stretching routine before and after my workouts. It gets my blood flowing and being very active in a variety of different sports and physical activities, it's rare that I have ever suffered a serious injury or pulled a muscle. The positive studies have shown stretching increases blood circulation, augments muscular coordination, as mentioned before, improves range of motion, alleviates muscle tension, and provides a boost in energy levels due to more blood circulating throughout the body. I would definitely recommend you make time (couple of minutes) to feature a full stretching routine at least 3 or 4 times a week. Your attention should predominately be on the major muscle groups. Your muscles will be more supple and the quality of your muscles will improve from the wider range of motion. You can also get added growth just from adding some stretching into your weekly routine. So the answer is yes, you should stretch.

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    • profile image

      chloelozano 4 years ago

      Good tips on stretching. I voted up.

    • saraisbella profile image

      Sara Vilaire 3 years ago from NY

      I try to stretch twice a day, my body feels geatafter I do it! A lot of people don't know how important it is to strecth those muscles.

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