All the way back in our grade school gym class we were told to always stretch our muscles before engaging in any form of physical activity. This is an important practice, and many remember to stretch before exercising. But, what about stretching after your workout routine? Most ignore the rule to stretch your muscles after a good workout, but fitness experts say you shouldn’t forget this simple task.
Why Do We Skip It?
There are many reasons why people skip stretching after a workout. For one thing, you’re tired after exercising. Your muscles are sore and you’re ready to hit the showers or grab a refreshing drink.
For the ones who remember to stretch after a workout, they simply bend over, touch their toes, and call it a day. They’re not stretching properly because they assume their bodies have already stretched enough during the workout.
Well, that’s where they’re wrong.
Why Should We Stretch?
As you exercise, your muscles are left in a shortened state. Stretching after your workout allows your muscles to reset to their natural state and posture.
Stretching after a workout will improve your body’s flexibility and help realign your body. Have you ever noticed how rigid and sore your body feels after some exercises? Stiff muscles are caused by choosing not to stretch and realign your body after an intense workout.
How Can You Stretch?
Stretching is completely free; you don’t need any workout equipment. There are many stretching techniques, with the most popular being static (holding a position) and dynamic (moving quickly through various positions).
After your workout, hold a position for about 25-30 seconds. You should stretch your quadricep muscles, your arms, your back, and more depending on what you worked out. Stretching will relax your muscles, but also provide a quick cool-down your body needs.
Listen to your body. Your sore muscles are telling you they need to be reset, so perform the appropriate stretching methods to help your body feel as good as new.