Stretching is the fundamental of fitness. No workout can give you results without stretching the body as it opens up the muscles to prevent injuries during workout. A lot of people only do stretching as their main exercise for the ample benefits it provides. Stretching improves flexibility and provides relaxation when done properly but a lot of people commit some stretching mistakes that can leave long-lasting impacts on the body. Find those mistakes in this article to see if you aren’t committing any of these.
#1 Stretching without warming up
Do you know the importance of a warm-up before exercising? The same goes for stretching. It helps in preparing the muscles for stretching by increasing the blood flow and making muscles more pliable.
Don’t jump straight into stretching, do a brisk walk or reverse walking or jogging to warm up the body. With this, the muscles loosen and reduce the risk of injuries due to stretching.
#2 Practising improper stretching techniques
How many types of stretching do you know? Most people do not know that there are two types of stretching to be done according to your fitness level minimizing the risks. Here are the two types we just mentioned:
Static stretching is when you hold a stretching pose to lengthen a particular muscle or area until you feel that it is stretched. Static stretches are the best post-workout for faster recovery and reduced muscle fatigue.
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Dynamic stretching is stretching in motion without holding any position. This type of stretching involves movements that you’d be doing in your workout and therefore, it is best as pre-workout stretching to prepare the muscles and joints.
If you believe there is no end to stretching and you can do it for as long as you want, you are WRONG! Since stretching is relaxing, many people do not realize that they have overstretched their muscles. This may result in torn muscle and cause acute pain. Never overstretch and be gentle with the muscles. You may repeat the stretch if your muscles still feel tight but don’t push the body past its limits. Also, if you are planning to increase your workouts, you should be aware of the pros and cons of working out twice a day.
#4 Doing bouncy stretches
You shouldn’t bounce while stretching as it may cause a pulled muscle. Generally, when you bounce, the muscles tighten to protect themselves from an injury. Bouncing while stretching may cause conflicting motions resulting in a pulled muscle. Instead of bouncing, practice dynamic stretching.
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#5 Not stretching often
Everyone should do stretching as it improves the flexibility of muscles and mobility of joints. In other words, stretching acts like oiling for muscles to keep them flexible and mobile. Not stretching often could cause discomfort and stiffness which may escalate to chronic pain. Remember, stretching is a must.
#6 Stretching an injured muscle
If you think that stretching would heal an injured muscle, you are absolutely wrong. Instead, it would aggravate the condition. An injured muscle requires rest to heal on its own.
These are some common stretching mistakes that most people commit and therefore, do not receive desired results. Note down these mistakes and make sure you do not commit them again.
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