Updated: Jun 4, 2019
When do you stretch? Read to find out if it's right...
One of the most overlooked preventative measures in the fitness industry is stretching. Far too many of us skip stretching because we are uneducated on the benefits and reasons we should be stretching. Here are some facts and reasons everyone should stretch daily.
It has been scientifically proven that stretching before exercising and warming up can be detrimental. It can reduce strength and resistance. It is recommended to stretch after exercising or at least after warming up. Stretching "cold" muscles can lead to injury. If your muscles are warm though, stretching properly can reduce injuries and give you better flexibility, range of motion, posture, and coordination.
Better Muscle Development
When exercising muscles contract and become shorter. Shorten tight muscles hurt more and deliver less strength than longer muscle. Stretching keeps muscles from shortening and ready to perform.
Regular stretching reduces the chance of injury by gradually elongating the muscle. If you’re more flexible then you’re less likely to pull or tear a muscle. If you slip or trip, your body is more apt to accommodate that position. In the short term it also helps to limber up the muscle and tendon and thereby helps prevent muscle or tendon injury.
Stretching can also help you improve your posture, particularly stretching the back. It may also alleviate pain, this is why it is commonly used in yoga and Pilates.
Drawbacks of Stretching
Despite all of its touted benefits – stretching does have its limits.
It is important to recognize that everything needs to be in moderation – too much stretching can be harmful. Over-stretching to the point where it causes pain can actually damage joints and muscles both in the long term and the short term.
Are We Clear On The Benefits Of Stretching?
Daily stretching can:
Improve your athletic abilities
Make you stronger
Reduce pain and stiffness
Less likely to be injured
Minimize wear and tear on joints
Improve your posture
Reduce your stress
Help muscle development
Increase blood flow and circulation
Improve overall health
About the author:
Rhett Butler is a Boxing Writer's Association of America Journalist, Play-By-Play Commentator, Combat Sports Insider, and Former Mixed Martial Arts and Boxing Promoter. The New York City native honed his skills at various news outlets including but not limited to: TIME Magazine, Money Magazine, CNN’s Wolf Blitzer Reports, and more. Rhett hosts the PRITTY Left Hook podcast, and has been there in person for some of Anderson Silva's biggest moments.
This post was edited by the Spider Kick Team.