Jan 20, 2014

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Stretch to Help Prevent Injuries …and More!

stretch to help prevent injuriesIt’s likely safe to assume that not everyone engages in stretching. The most common excuse being that they don’t have the time. However, everyone needs to spend time working on improving their flexibility. The benefits of improved flexibility are endless and extend well beyond just improving exercise performance. Perhaps one of the biggest benefits of stretching is injury prevention. Let’s face, your life is busy. No one has time for an injury to set them back.  Below are some key points on why you should stretch to help prevent injuries.

Stretch to Help Prevent Injuries and More

1. Stretching can help to reduce your risk of injury. Muscles that are flexible are much less likely to become injured from exercising. By increasing the range of motion of your joints (via stretching), you may decrease the resistance on your muscles during various physical activities.As a result, you are much less likely to spend time on the sidelines resting and recovering from sprains, strains and possibly even more serious injuries such as ligament tears.

2. Stretching can help to decrease the risk of low-back pain. Many adults suffering from lower back pain. In fact, over 80 percent of adults will suffer from lower back pain at some point in their life or another. Stretching can help to improve flexibility in the hip flexors, hamstrings and muscles attached to your pelvis. This can help to reduce stress on the lumbar spine. As a result, you can help reduce your risk of developing lower back pain.

3. Stretching helps to promote circulation. Stretching can help to increase the supply of blood to your joints and muscles. This allows for great nutrient transportation and improve blood circulation throughout your entire body.

4. By stretching, you can help to prepare your body for the stress that exercise places on the body. Stretching before exercising allows your muscles to loosen up and become more resistant to the strenuous activity they are about to endure.

5. Work to improve your posture by stretching. By stretching the muscles in your lower back, chest and shoulders, you can help keep your spine inline and improve your posture at the same time.

6. If you have ever experienced post-workout aches and pains, stretching can help to reduce these aches and pains. By stretching your muscles, you can help to keep them loose and lessen the shortening and tightening effect that can occur after an intense workout. Therefore, reducing aches and pains.

7. Stretching helps to improve flexibility. Are you an athlete? Flexibility can help to improve your athletic performance.

8. Stretching can lead to an increased range of motion. The ability to better move your joints leads to better balance. With better balance, you are less likely to fall or lose your balance during exercise or daily life. This means fewer injuries. Balance and range of motion also helps to keep you up and active as you age.

As you can see you should stretch to help prevent injuries, improve flexibility, reduce aches and improve circulation in your body.  Again, Remember to always stretch!  Your body will thank you for it!

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  • Michael H

    The old saying about an ounce of prevention holds true. It’s funny that the article mentions ‘not having the time’ to deal with an injury in our daily lives. I used to exercise as if I didn’t have the time to incorporate stretching into my routine. But when you reach a certain age you start to be more mindful about “babying” your body, especially your joints. Burning all the calories in the world won’t do you any good when you have a hard time walking! Stretch every day.

  • Yulin

    Item #6 I think is often overlooked. Just as we often are conscious more of warming up than we are of cooling down after a workout, I think too many of us remember to stretch before but not after. This is important for making the most of all the time and effort you’ve put into the workout. And the stretches I do at the end of a routine after I’ve already got the blood flowing feel much better.