Why do I have to stretch?

Flexibility is needed to perform everyday activities with relative ease. To get out of bed, bending in hard to reach areas, lift children, or sweep the floor. Flexibility tends to deteriorate with age, often due to a sedentary (inactive) lifestyle. This blog is to help motivate and educate you to stretch on a daily basis so that physical activities can become easier to perform on a daily basis.
There is scientific evidence that the incidence of injury decreases when people include flexibility training in their routines due to the enhanced ability to move unimpeded through a wider range of motion (ROM). The following are some of the major benefits of flexibility training:
• Reduces stress in the exercising muscles and releases tension developed during the workout.
• Assists with posture by balancing the tension placed across the joint by the muscles that cross it. Proper posture minimizes stress and maximizes the strength of all joint movements.
• Reduces the risk of injury during exercise and daily activities because muscles are more flexible.
• Improves performance of everyday activities as well as performance in exercise and sport.
As with all other components of the workout, flexibility training should be based on the FITT formula.

There are two types of stretching which are named static and dynamic. Here is a description and example of each:
Static: This method of flexibility training involves taking a specific joint or set of joints through a ROM to a comfortable end point (at least15- 20 seconds), resting for approximately 20 seconds, and then repeating the stretch two to three times.

 

Dynamic: This method of flexibility training uses increasingly active movements through the full ROM of a joint. The exercise begins at a slow pace and gradually increases in speed and intensity. This method of stretching is best performed before exercise or activity that is movement based, like tennis or hiking.

Source:  Human Kinetics

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