Stretching after a workout allows you to avoid injuries and speed up the recovery process. During physical activity, muscles contract, returning to their original state not immediately, but within a few days. Without recovery, they cannot build strength and withstand the intensity of the workout. Stretching at the end of the session helps to bring the muscle tissues back to their original state much faster.
If you don’t do stretching after a workout, muscle recovery is delayed, which means the effectiveness of the exercises is reduced. This leads to stagnation in strength and endurance growth.
So, post-workout stretching helps:
– shorten muscle and joint recovery time;
– reduce heart rate, restore blood pressure;
– relieve muscle tension, reducing crepature (muscle pain after physical activity);
– stimulate the growth of muscle mass;
– reduce stress on the body after an intense workout.
Stretching should be done for 10-15 minutes after training, stretching all muscle groups involved in the exercises.
Stretching should be an obligatory final stage of strength or cardio training. It helps to improve the physical capabilities of the body and avoid injuries. Neglecting stretching to save time is not worth it.
Harms and contraindications
Stretching – a universal form of fitness, which can do men and women of any age and with different levels of fitness. But with certain diseases, stretching the muscles and ligaments can be harmful rather than beneficial.
Contraindications to exercising stretching are:
– exacerbations of chronic diseases, especially arthritis, intervertebral hernia, radiculitis;
– fractures and dislocations – injured ligaments and bones are not compatible with exercises in stretching;
– cardiovascular system disorders associated with the risk of thrombosis;
– Acute period of viral diseases (with fever).
Stretching is not contraindicated for women during pregnancy, if there are no complications and threats associated with this condition. Stretching exercises will only bring benefits: prepare the body of pregnant women for the impending birth, reduce back pain, swelling, and facilitate the recovery period. Many gynecologists recommend that during the waiting period of the baby every day to do stretching.
There are only some restrictions in connection with the increasing volume of the abdomen – you should not do exercises that squeeze the internal organs (for example, standing bends).
What is the right way to train?
Incorrect execution of exercises may cause injuries and bring more harm than good. For stretching to be safe and have only positive effects on the body, it is important to follow a few simple rules.
- Begin stretching only after a 10-15 minute warm-up. Dynamic movements performed with a small amplitude will increase blood flow and increase the temperature of the muscles. Warmed up muscle fibers stretch more effectively, reducing the risk of injury.
- Perform stretching exercises slowly and smoothly, without jerking.
- Control your breathing. Muscles should be stretched on exhalation after a deep abdominal inhalation. Delayed breathing reduces the effectiveness of the exercises.
- Hold the muscle in a stretched position for 30 seconds. Gradually increase this time to one minute. There is no point in staying longer, it is better to perform 2-4 repetitions of the exercise.
- Increase the frequency, amplitude and intensity of the movements gradually, from class to class.
- Do not perform exercises through severe pain. Stretch until the feeling of slight discomfort is felt. Stretching must bring pleasure, there is no need to engage in self-torture.
- It is desirable to train every day or at least 3-4 times a week. You can improve your flexibility only through regular practice.
- You should train in comfortable elastic clothes, preferably barefoot.
Do not speed things up, dreaming to get as quickly as possible the same stretching as in ballerinas or gymnasts. The principle of gradualness should be followed. With a lot of tension unprepared muscles can tear.
Stretching – a useful relaxing exercise that is suitable for almost everyone. Including it in his daily life, you can forget about the pain in the joints and lower back, to have a regal posture, graceful and graceful figure. Stretching prolongs youth, gives the opportunity to feel healthy and in good spirits for many years. Isn’t this the dream of each of us?