Is stretching good for you?

The benefits of regular stretching are many. Not only can stretching help you improve your flexibility, which is an important factor in fitness, but it can also improve your posture, reduce stress and body pain, and much more. Read this article to learn more about the benefits of stretching and how to implement them.

The 9 benefits of stretching

1. Improve your flexibility

Regular stretching can help improve your flexibility, which is essential for your overall health. Not only can better flexibility help you perform everyday activities with relative ease, but it can also help delay the reduction in mobility that can occur with aging.

2. Increases your range of motion

Being able to move a joint through its full range of motion gives you greater freedom of movement. Regular stretching can help increase your range of motion.
According to one study, static and dynamic stretching are both effective in increasing range of motion, although PNF (proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation) type stretching, which involves stretching a muscle to its limit, is more effective in immediate gains.

3. Improves your performance in physical activities

Performing dynamic stretches before physical activity has been shown to help prepare your muscles for that activity. It can also help improve your performance during a sporting event or exercise.

4. Increases blood flow to your muscles

Regular stretching can improve your blood circulation. Better blood circulation increases blood flow to your muscles, which can shorten your recovery time and reduce muscle soreness.

5. Improve your posture

Muscle imbalances are common and can lead to poor posture. According to one study, a combination of strengthening and stretching specific muscle groups can reduce musculoskeletal pain and promote proper alignment. This, in turn, can help improve your posture.

6. Helps heal and prevent back pain

Tight muscles can cause your range of motion to decrease. When this happens, you increase the likelihood of straining your back muscles. Stretching can help heal an existing back injury by stretching the muscles. A regular stretching routine can also help prevent future back pain by strengthening back muscles and reducing the risk of muscle strain.

7. It’s a great way to relieve stress

When you’re stressed, chances are your muscles are tense. This is because your muscles tend to contract in response to physical and emotional stress. Focus on areas of your body where you tend to hold stress, such as your neck, shoulders, and upper back.

8. Can calm your mind

Participating in a regular stretching program not only improves your flexibility, but also calms your mind. As you stretch, focus on mindfulness and meditation exercises, which give your mind a mental break.

9. Helps Reduce Tension Headaches

Headaches from tension and stress can disrupt your daily life. Along with a good diet, adequate hydration, and plenty of rest, stretching can help reduce the tension you feel from headaches.

Stretching Techniques

There are several types of stretching techniques, including the following:

active stretching

The most common forms of stretching are static and dynamic:

Static stretching involves holding a stretch in a comfortable position for a certain amount of time, usually between 10 and 30 seconds. This form of stretching is most beneficial after exercise.

Dynamic stretches are active movements that cause your muscles to stretch, but the stretch is not held in the final position. These stretches are usually done before exercise to prepare your muscles for movement.


Do dynamic stretches before exercise to prepare your muscles.
Use static stretches after exercise to reduce the risk of injury.

How to start a stretching program

If you’ve never done regular stretching, take it easy. As with any other form of physical activity, your body needs time to get used to the stretches you perform.
You must also acquire a good command of form and technique. Otherwise, you risk injuring yourself.

You can stretch at any time of the day. Days you exercise:

aim for 5-10 minutes of dynamic stretching before your activity
do 5 to 10 minutes of static stretching after your workout.
On days when you don’t exercise, still plan at least 5 to 10 minutes of stretching. This can help improve flexibility and reduce muscle tension and soreness.

When stretching, focus on the main areas of the body that contribute to mobility, such as the calves, hamstrings, hip flexors and quadriceps. To relieve the upper body, try movements that stretch the shoulders, neck and lower back.

Hold each stretch for 30 seconds and avoid bouncing.

You can stretch after every workout or athletic activity, or every day after warming up your muscles. Try this daily 5 minute stretching program to get started.

Risks and Safety Tips

Stretching is not always safe:

If you have an acute or existing injury, perform only those stretches recommended by your doctor.

If you have a chronic or nagging injury, consider consulting with a sports medicine specialist or physical therapist to design a stretching protocol that is right for you.

If you have physical limitations that prevent you from performing a stretching exercise properly, consult your doctor about alternative exercises that can help improve your flexibility.

Regardless of your fitness level, there are some standard stretching safety tips you should follow:

Don’t bounce. A few years ago ballistic stretching was considered the best way to improve flexibility. Today, experts suggest avoiding bouncing unless this type of stretching has been recommended to you by a doctor or physical therapist.

Do not stretch beyond the point of comfort. While it is normal to feel some tension when stretching a muscle, you should never feel pain. If the area you are stretching starts to hurt, decrease the stretch until you feel no more discomfort.

Don’t overdo it. Like other forms of exercise, stretching puts stress on your body. If you stretch the same muscle groups multiple times a day, you risk overdoing it and causing damage.

Don’t start stretching cold. Cold muscles are not as flexible, which makes stretching much more difficult. The best time to stretch is after a workout, but if you’re not exercising before stretching, consider warming up for 5-10 minutes by doing some light cardio, like walking or jogging. jogging.

To remember

Whether you’re new to exercise or a seasoned athlete, you can benefit from a regular stretching routine. By incorporating 5-10 minutes of dynamic and static stretching into your daily workout, you can increase your range of motion, improve your posture, and ease your mind.

* criptom strives to transmit health knowledge in a language accessible to all. In NO CASE, the information given can not replace the opinion of a health professional.