Stretching exercises are something most people rush to finish after an intense workout. Is this good for you? NO! Stretching keeps the muscles flexible, strong, and healthy. We need flexibility to maintain a range of motion in our joints. Without it, our muscles shorten and become tight. A feeling I am too familiar with as I struggle to get out of bed a day after an intense workout. After reading up on stretching and what it can do for you, it made me kick the bad habit of not stretching enough. Here’s some benefits OF stretching for your body and mind:
For Your Body
- Helps improve flexibility
- Stretching before and after a workout reduces soreness by giving your muscles time to relax.
- Assists in correct posture by lengthening tight muscles that pull areas of the body away from their intended position.
- Potential to decrease injury by preparing muscles for work before activity.
- Increases blood and nutrient supply to muscles.
- Improve athletic performance. If your muscles are already contracted because you haven’t stretched, then they will be less effective during exercise.
For Your Mind
- Even a short amount of time (10-15 minutes) of stretching can calm the mind, provide a mental break, and give your body a chance to recharge.
- Classes like pilates or yoga offer you a chance to spend an hour releasing tension physically and mentally.
- Improve energy levels, sometimes you may have trouble staying awake during your long, dragging day. If you’re feeling this way then it might help to get out of your seat and do a few good stretches for a boost of energy levels, helping your mind and body be more alert.
Try these stretches
Photo credits: Blogilates
There are many more easy to follow stretching and yoga routines on the internet that you can do in the comfort of your home. I would suggest to stretch the pain away while watching one of your favourite series or after a hot bath. This way you’ll be enjoying television time without getting couch potato posture.
Happy stretching ladies.