How many of you follow a constant stretching routine? We knew it; the minority! Most gym-goers directly jump into their workout believing that stretching after or before working out is a waste of time. However, it is time to end this vicious cycle and add stretching to your workout regimen ASAP; and now you will know why!
The benefits of stretching before a workout
You might be thinking that stretching is all about “flexibility”, but trust us on this, it’s more than that. In fact, stretching has a lot of benefits that you will be surprised to know, including:
- Stretching improves circulation: stretching can improve blood flow, and thus prepare your muscles for intense exercise.
- Stretching increases flexibility: if you want to relax tense muscles and tendons, leave it to stretching.
- Stretching enhances your performance: when your blood flow is great, your flexibility has improved, and your range of motion increased, would you be surprised to know that stretching improves performance?
- Stretching helps you unwind: stress causes stiff muscles, mainly in your neck, back, and shoulders. When you stretch, you help those stress-related muscles to loosen up. So, whenever you are feeling overwhelmed, you now know that stretching is a stress relief.
The benefits of stretching after a workout
We know that the last thing you want to do after your workout is stretching; but keep reading, you will change your mind.
- Stretching reduces injury: do you know what causes pain and injury after a workout? Your tense muscles! Stretching after your workout relaxes the muscles that remained tight, which will decrease the risk of injury and even prevent back pain.
- Stretching gets rid of lactic acid: whenever you break a sweat, your body produces a substance called lactic acid which is responsible for muscle aches and soreness. Hence, stretching after a workout can eliminate lactic acid and ease muscle pain post-workout.
- Stretching helps you relax: the best way to slow down your racing heart and mind post-workout is through proper stretching!
How to include stretching in your workout routine?
First of all, you have to know that stretching exercises are not for everyone, especially if you are injured. Our certified personal trainers at PowerHouse Gym know what stretching techniques are best for you, and will provide you with safety tips.
So, if you have taken the thumbs up from your personal trainer or physical therapist, follow the bellow tips:
- Warm up at least 5 minutes before your workout since stretching cold muscles can cause pain and injury.
- Start slowly, and stop when you are uncomfortable.
- Stay away from bouncing.
- Stretch for 5-10 minutes before and after your workout.
- Dynamic stretches are the ideal movements pre-workout as they prepare your muscles for the workout and improve your speed and agility.
- Static stretches are a must post-workout as they help you wind down.
- Stick to a stretching routine to start seeing results.
- Focus on stretching your calves, hips, back, hamstrings, neck, shoulders, and quadriceps.
Stretching exercises can really make a difference in your health and wellness! At PowerHouse Gym, we always make sure to provide you with the best fitness tips and hacks to make the most out of your workouts!