Stretching after exercise: why do we bother?
Stretching is one of those things we are always told to do by trainers or group fitness instructors, but why bother? What exactly does it do?
This is part 1 of a two part mini series on stretching and flexibility. Here are a few benefits you will gain from stretching.
For Your Body
- Helps improve flexibility (increases your range of motion) hoch otherwise decreases as we grow older.
- Assists in correct posture by lengthening tight muscles that pull areas of the body away from their intended position (e.g. because of so much time at our computers, many of us have tight chest muscles which pulls the shoulders and head forward, leaving us with a hunched shoulder look)
- Potential to decrease injury by preparing muscles for work before activity.
- Increases blood and nutrient supply to muscles, thereby possibly reducing muscle soreness
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 yoga or pilates offer you a chance to spend an hour releasing tension physically and mentally