Holy hamstrings! I am tighter than tight these days especially my hamstrings and glutes. I know I need to incorporate stretching because I know the benefits of stretching daily.
Since I am lifting heavier and focusing on these muscles, my body is sore. Unfortunately, it’s par for the course.
If for no other reason than stretching for 5-10 minutes a day can give you some amazing benefits that will improve workouts and overall health.
My body is upset with me. I have found that when I am taking Bikram Yoga or Pilates, I am at my best. But because I am not stretching daily or in Bikram, my body needs work.
I’m not necessarily talking about mindless stretching either. Stretching can involve the entire body. If done right, stretching daily can be integrated with the training you are doing now.
What are the benefits of stretching daily?
Stretching increases strength by improving circulation and blood flow to the muscles. This not only provides greater nutrients to every muscle of the body but helps those muscles recover faster in between workouts. The increased blood flow helps prevent soreness and muscle fatigue during recovery periods and allows for more frequent high-intensity workouts.
Muscle imbalances are common and can lead to poor posture. You see people who like Hunchback of Notre Dame with their shoulders near their ears.
When your muscles are relaxed, you can and will sit taller.
Good for circulation
Lengthening and loosening the muscles helps dramatically with circulation. This will help reduce post-workout soreness and shorten recovery time and improve overall health.
Stretching reduces stress by loosening the muscles and relieving built-up tension. When you’re experiencing stress, it’s a good chance your muscles are tense. Your muscles tend to tighten up in response to physical and emotional stress.
Increase range of motion
An increased range of motion in the joints has many benefits and stretching is the best way to achieve this.
I have found that increasing my hip flexibility is key in improving my range of motion. Static stretching helps me the most in this area.
Eliminates Lactic Acid
Muscle fatigue and soreness occurs due to the lactic acid produced by the body when you start exercising. Stretching and foam rolling helps to get rid of it and relaxes the muscles.
Does stretching daily take a lot of time?
No, it doesn’t. A stretching routine can take as little as 5 minutes, which we all have. You can do some dynamic stretching while in the kitchen cooking, in the living room watching TV or in the bathroom brushing your teeth. Static stretching doesn’t require a lot of time either.
Be sure to give yourself a good stretch, breathing into the muscle you’re stretching to further increase the stretch.
How often do you stretch?