Health Coach, Employee Wellness, Get Fit, Eat Healthy & Exercise New Hampshire
There’s a big misconception that stretching is only for people who workout or people who are athletes. And many people who do workout, don’t see the benefits of stretching.
If you think that stretching is a waste of your time, I encourage you to keep reading because EVERONE benefits from stretching, whether you’re sitting at home or an office all day or you’re an athlete!
Why You Need to Stretch
While you don’t need to have the flexibility of an advanced yoga instructor, you do need some degree of flexibility to prevent injury from both recreational and day-to-day activities.
If your muscles are tight and you want to participate in a sport or leisurely activity, or maybe you simply want to be able to bend over and tie your shoes without pain, improving your flexibility will help reduce your risk of getting injured.
When you sit for extended periods of time without stretching and moving your body, over time your flexibility decreases, which leads to muscle imbalances and poor posture. And before you know it squatting down to pick up a bag of groceries is a challenge!
When your muscles become imbalanced (some muscles become short and tight, and others become long and weak due to misuse), you may develop poor posture. Poor posture leads to weight being unevenly distributed on your joints, which puts tremendous stress on your muscles and tendons, thereby setting the stage for injury and pain.
It is very important to address muscles imbalances BEFORE your engage in an exercise program. When you exercise on top of pre-existing muscle imbalances the imbalances only get worse, and you risk getting seriously hurt.
It’s like attempting to build a beautiful home on a crooked and unstable foundation; you don’t focus on putting up siding, shudders and a roof until you’ve built a strong and steady foundation. As you’re building a healthy, strong body, from the inside out, you must first build a strong foundation by balancing your body.
Below are my top five favorite stretches. These stretches with will help you increase your flexibility and improve your range of motion and reduce your risk of injury inside AND outside of the gym!
Be sure to stretch only the muscles that feel tight. If you perform the stretch and you don't feel tightness that muscle doesn't need to be stretched so don't include it in your stretch routine.
Here is a description of each stretch:
Stability Ball Quad Stretch
Stability Ball Chest Stretch
Stability Ball Abdominal Stretch
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To a leaner, more limber you!