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Why you should stretch after exercise...

Posted on 03 March 2017


Research suggests that stretching after exercise rather than before can prevent injury and improve your overall performance by giving you increased flexibility and mobility. Stretching before you work out has no proven benefits but also no real proven disadvantages. A flexible muscle is less likely to become injured than one which is tighter. By increasing the range of movement around a particular joint through stretching you will decrease the resistance on your muscles during various activities.


Stretching after exercise can also help to increase circulation and flexibility. It helps lower your heart rate slowly and can prevent injury and DOMS. When we workout, lactic acid builds up in our muscles which can eventually lead to muscle soreness and fatigue. One way to reduce this would be to stretch after exercise when our muscles are warm. This increases circulation to the muscles which can then prevent them being as sore the next day. As you perform contractions during your workout, your muscles are left in a shortened state. Stretching will help to reset your body to a natural position and also improve your posture.


There are different types of stretching techniques with the most popular being static (holding a position) and dynamic (moving through positions. Use dynamic stretching before you work out as these focus on quick movements that increase body temperature and heart rate ready for exercise. After your workout use static stretching. Hold each stretch for 25-30 seconds before releasing. Static stretching is only part of a good cool-down routine. Along with stretching, put some light walking and foam rolling at the end of your workout.

Not every muscle needs to be stretched post-workout. Focus on those areas that are exceptionally tight either from the workout or from daily posture

By Daisy Moore


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