Home Health Education Stretching – familydoctor.org

Stretching – familydoctor.org

Stretching – familydoctor.org


Stretching is among the greatest methods to maintain your muscle tissue wholesome. Stretching usually will assist keep your muscle energy and improve your flexibility. The extra versatile you might be, the higher it’s to your joints. Retaining muscle tissue and joints in prime situation helps along with your day-to-day vary of movement and may help guard towards damage.

As useful as stretching is, there was a shift in train idea concerning how you need to stretch and when. For years, consultants advisable stretching earlier than you performed sports activities or earlier than you exercised. Nevertheless, current analysis means that stretching earlier than a exercise doesn’t lower your likelihood of damage. As a substitute, it’s extra vital to do a warmup earlier than exercising.

Stretching and warm-ups usually are not the identical. warmup will enhance your coronary heart fee. It’s going to make your physique heat throughout due to the elevated blood stream and oxygen to your muscle tissue. Particularly, your warmup ought to make you break a lightweight sweat and goal the identical muscle tissue you’ll use throughout your sport or exercise. Stretching needs to be carried out at post-game or post-workout.

Whereas stretching has lengthy been related to understanding, stretching every day or a number of instances every week as its personal exercise can enhance muscle and joint well being. Including it to your routine does present a flexibility that decreases the danger of day-to-day damage. Plus, it helps cut back stress, will increase environment friendly muscle motion, and might enhance your posture.

Path to improved well being

Take into consideration waking up within the morning. Most definitely, one of many first belongings you do with out even occupied with it’s stretch. Stretching is instinctive, which means that your physique already is main you to do it. Whereas this sort of morning stretching is a good way to rise up and going, specializing in extra focused stretching throughout the day could have the best profit on muscle tissue and joints.

Exercise stretching

Regardless that it’s best to do deep stretching post-workout, your warmup may also embody components which have built-in stretches. That is typically known as dynamic stretching and even dynamic warmup. Examples of incorporating stretching into your warmup embody performing lunges, doing excessive kicks, pushups, leap squats — virtually any heart-boosting exercise that engages the identical muscle tissue you might be about to make use of in your sports activities exercise or exercise.

Put up exercise, your stretching needs to be much more purposeful. It will be significant that you simply stretch to scale back stress in order that your muscle tissue can return to a relaxed state. Whereas static stretching (stretching muscle tissue with out warming up in an effort to loosen them) earlier than a sporting exercise has been proven to lower muscle energy and energy, after exercise is an efficient time for this sort of stretching. Your physique already being heat from train will assist lengthen that muscle tissue. It in all probability gained’t stop soreness, although.

Stretching at work

If you end up getting sleepy at work or college or dropping focus, it’s time to stretch. Stretching at work can guard towards repetitive-motion accidents which can be brought on by deskwork. It could enhance power, as effectively.

You’ll be able to start with some easy overhead-arm stretches, however don’t cease there. Do stretches that have interaction your higher and decrease again, your neck, your legs, and even your wrists and ankles. Don’t be embarrassed to face up and even do a number of squats. In actual fact, standing as an alternative of sitting is a good way to interrupt up your day and get your circulation flowing, so do it each time you possibly can.

Stretching when you find yourself pregnant

One other vital time to maintain stretching is when you find yourself pregnant. Stretching can hold you feeling your greatest. It could assist put together your physique by lengthening muscle tissue, which may help offset the rising stress on joints. Free, versatile muscle tissue additionally assist make you snug as you carry further weight.

Pregnant ladies ought to goal higher and decrease again muscle tissue, leg muscle tissue, and their chest and hips with stretches. Simply bear in mind to maneuver slowly. Being pregnant relaxes your ligaments and joints and might have an effect on your steadiness. Additionally, cease stretching if you’re in ache. At all times hearken to your physique.

Stretching for seniors

It’s all about sustaining that flexibility with regards to stretching for seniors. Flexibility will assist with steadiness, which is one other nice profit. Being versatile and balanced promotes security in day-to-day actions. Analysis reveals that stretching a minimum of 3 instances every week for 15 to twenty minutes will enhance mobility. Doing it 5 days every week is even higher.

Earlier than beginning a stretching routine, make sure you discuss to your physician. That is particularly vital should you’ve had hip or again surgical procedure or some other main surgical procedure or damage. Your physician can information you to some secure methods to stretch your decrease physique that gained’t irritate any previous accidents.

Suggestions for higher stretching

  • Main muscle teams actually profit from stretching. Concentrate on shoulders and neck, calves and thighs, hips, and decrease again.
  • Stretch evenly on either side.
  • Maintain stretches for about 30 seconds.
  • Bear in mind to breathe. Exhale whereas going into the stretch; maintain the stretch as you inhale.
  • Don’t bounce whereas stretching.
  • Use it or lose it. You must stretch usually if you wish to keep your flexibility.

Issues to contemplate

Regardless of your age or situation, there are occasions when stretching might be a nasty factor. For instance, decrease again accidents may be made worse by sure stretches that focus on your hamstrings and hip flexors.

For those who push it too far or jerk your physique, you might injure muscle tissue, ligaments, or nerves simply by stretching. Stretching shouldn’t be painful. A gentle discomfort means you might be getting a very good stretch. For those who really feel ache, you need to ease up or cease.

Additionally, know that stretching gained’t stop overuse damage. Nevertheless, the general advantages of normal stretching could make you nimble and decrease damage.

When to see a health care provider

Earlier than you begin any kind of train or sport, together with stretching, you need to seek the advice of along with your physician. Your physician can recommend one of the best ways so that you can pursue exercise that’s secure to your physique.

If, whereas stretching, you hear a popping noise paired with sudden ache, you need to seek the advice of your physician. For those who pressure a muscle and it doesn’t reply to RICE (Relaxation, Ice, Compression, Elevation) after a number of days, see your physician.

In these conditions, your physician will be capable to consider and grade the kind of your damage. Some muscle tears require surgical restore, although this isn’t frequent. The grade of pressure will information your restoration time and degree of exercise as you get better.

Questions to your physician

  • What are one of the best stretches I can do for my physique?
  • Can stretching enhance my steadiness?
  • Can I stretch with out warming up first?
  • How typically do I must stretch to keep up my flexibility?
  • Is there a most well-liked order for stretching muscle teams?
  • I stretch day-after-day. Why aren’t I as versatile as my good friend?
  • I’m pregnant. What stretches ought to I be doing, and which ought to I keep away from?
  • I’m a senior citizen. How a lot time ought to I spend stretching every week?


Nationwide Institutes of Well being, MedlinePlus: Flexibility Train

Nationwide Institutes of Well being: Nationwide Institute on Growing old: Train and bodily exercise

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Copyright © American Academy of Household Physicians

This info gives a common overview and will not apply to everybody. Discuss to your loved ones physician to seek out out if this info applies to you and to get extra info on this topic.



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