This Monday, complement your Move It Monday fitness activities with some low-impact stretches. It might come as a surprise, but regular stretching has many benefits. By increasing your flexibility, it can improve your athletic ability, increase your range of motion, and reduce the chance of future injury.
Stretching is one of the four types of exercise, along with building strength, balance, and endurance. You don’t need to be bendy like a yoga teacher to tone your muscles and keep them supple. Being flexible can help you enjoy more of life.
Stretching Routine Tips
Stretching can be done before a workout, after a workout, or alone. You’ll want to warm-up before stretching so your muscles aren’t cold. Warm-up by walking in place for a few minutes, or if you’re in a chair, “walk” in place in the chair.
What to Stretch
You might need to use a good sturdy chair or a wall to maintain your balance. A good place to begin stretching is by concentrating on your calves, thighs, hips, lower back, neck, and shoulders. You might feel tension as you stretch but if you feel any pain, back off until you no longer feel it.
How to Stretch
Relax and breathe normally while stretching. Count to 10 slowly or time yourself for 10-30 seconds.
Whether reaching towards your toes or outstretching your arms, don’t lock up like a curtain rod. Your joints want to be loose, not tight, so think about fluidity while preserving a light motion and relaxation.
Stretch to DeStress!
Remember, don’t overdo it! Becoming more flexible takes time. What you may not be able to do today, you might be able to do tomorrow. Be patient. And being more limber can alleviate built-up tension in your body. That’s right, destress. Feel any tension melt away!
Make Monday about literally reaching for the sky to relieve your stress, stiffness, and immobility. Do more by continuing throughout the week for best results and recommitting on Monday.