We all know we should stretch, but far too many of us overlook this and choose to get on with the ‘fun stuff’ instead. Part of the problem is that we are not educated quite enough on the reasons we should be stretching- so here is a list of all the reasons we should be doing it could help encourage us to be more vigilant. Time to stretch it out!
It Improves Muscle Development
If you’re doing a workout with the hope of building muscle then stretching is very important as it enables you to move through the full range of movement. This then results in your building full and long muscles instead of them becoming stunted and short.
It Increases Range of Motion
Not only does stretching increase the range of motion for someone lifting weights while they’re doing it, it also helps to increase range of motion and flexibility in general. This then means that you will be more likely to perform things such as the splits or high kicks. It’s highly useful in a range of different athletic and sporting events and many athletes practice stretching for this reason.
It Reduces Injury
Stretching reduces the chance of injury by gradually elongating the muscle. If you’re more flexible then that will mean that you don’t pull or tear a muscle if you are to slip or trip as your body is capable of reaching that position. In the short term it also helps to limber up the muscle and tendon and thereby prevent a pulled muscle or tendon.
It Warms You Up
Stretching can be used as a way to warm up the muscles and it will encourage the flow of blood. This then provides the muscles with an oxygen supply as well as nutrients in order to help them to keep going.
It Improve Posture
Stretching can also help you to improve your posture and particularly stretching the back. It may also be useful for alleviating pain and this is why it is commonly used as a part of yoga and Pilates.