Stretching is considered one of the best phenomena for fitness and maintaining body posture but due to hectic routines and busy schedules, you usually ignore and forget this miraculous therapy. However, if you consider countless benefits of stretching and make a habit of stretching daily, then there will be an extremely healthy and amazing boost in your mental and physical health.
In simple words, stretching is a movement that causes the elongation of muscles that improves flexibility, posture,and circulation. Still, wondering what does stretching do? Let’s have a look at the 11 awesome benefits of stretching.
1 You can improve your posture by Stretching.
Imbalances in muscles are quite common and are the leading cause of poor posture. But if you do stretching of your muscles particularly focusing on muscles of shoulder, chest, and back then you can get better alignment and there will be an improvement in posture.
2 Stretching can also enhance flexibility.
Flexibility is an integral part of fitness. Stretching can enhance flexibility and in return, flexibility improves the quality of life and prevent the risk of injuries. An increase in flexibility by stretching can be both short term and long term.
- Short term gains are maybe due to your CNS that become more tolerable to stretch positions.
- Long termeffects can be obtained by subjecting the targeted muscle to stretching, five to six days a week.
3 You can use Stretching as a warm-up for your workouts
Stretching is the best warm-up exercise before workouts. Type of stretching, known as Dynamic stretching, is often used before exercise. Dynamic stretches warm up the muscles, joints, and tendons and increase the range of motion temporarily so that you may carry out your exercise movements while retaining the ideal body positions.
4 Stretching can minimize the risk of Injuries
Yes, this is true. You can greatly reduce the risk of injuries simply by doing stretching. Injuries related to:
- Poor posture,
- Muscles spasms,
- Muscles tensions and
These can be prevented if you make habit of doing stretches daily. Stretching improves flexibility, increases range of motion thus, risks of acquiring injury while doing muscular activities minimizes.
5 Stretching can reduce and prevent achiness in the body
Sitting for longer hours or doing desk jobs have drastic effects on your muscular system. Stiffness, spasms, and eventually, shortening of muscles occurs. This, in return, cause achiness in muscles and causes pain. But the good news is that you can prevent this unpleasant sensation of ache just by doing stretching. Consistently performing a static type of stretching can reverse the shortening of muscles by increasing flexibility of muscles and thus, alleviate the tightness and achy sensations.
6 Stretching can be beneficial post-workout too
You can perform stretching to calm down your body after an intense workout. Stretching after exercise loosens the tight muscles, increase nutrient and blood flow, and thus reduce body aches and pain occurring post-workout.
7 Stretching can induce relaxation
Stretching can produce soothing effects and make you feel good and anything that feels good; whether it is a cup of hot chocolate, a walkin the evening, or just stretching, causes relaxation,both physically and mentally.
8 Stretching can improve overall muscle performance
One of the amazing advantages of this simple therapy called, Stretching, is improving and maximizing muscle performance. Doing simple stretches daily doesthe following to your body :
- Increase flexibility,
- Improve range of motion,
- Reduce muscle spasms,
- Minimize muscle aches and
- Improves muscle performances.
Stretching decrease and prevent the risk of low back pain.
You can heal your low back pain by performing simple steps of stretching. Yes! No medicine is needed to heal this frequently occurring muscular problem if you make a habit of doing stretches daily. Just do stretching while focusing on your back and lower back muscle group that in return reduce muscle strains and tension that is caused by prolonged hours of sitting or maintaining a poor posture for longer durations.
10 Stretching may reduce muscle stiffness and increase ROM
Muscle stiffness and spasms are the leading cause of bodily pain. Body aches, muscle strains, low back pain are all result of a decrease in ROM and muscular disabilities. But the good news is, you can prevent these problems by adopting the habit of stretching regularly. Simple and easy to performsteps of stretching heal muscle spasms, increase range of motion and flexibility, and thus, improve quality of life.
11 Stretching may also be used as a Treatment option
And here is one of the most useful and awesome benefits of stretching. Many Physical Therapist doctors are using this technique of stretching as a treatment option. For Rehabilitation, this therapy is widely used in the treatment of the following, all over the world:
- Orthopedic conditions.
- Plantar Fasciitis.
- And many more.
Getting into the Stretching Routine
So, now you are aware of all the hidden benefits of stretching. But you are still confused about how to start and where to start? Simply follow these guidelines to start stretching :
- Start by stretching daily for 10 – 15 minutes. Remember not to rush as the body needs some time to adapt itself to this new routine.
- In the beginning, use simple steps of stretching and keep within your specific ranges. If you try to overstretch, you are more likely to harm yourself.
Also, note that stretching in the morning after waking up and at night, before going to bed is more beneficial as compared to other parts of the day.
Risk factors and Precautions
While there are numerous benefits and advantages of stretching daily but still you need to follow some precautionary measures especially if you are new to stretching. Keep in mind the following risk factors linked with stretching :
- If you are a newbie then you may injure yourself by performing overstretching.
- Stretching may cause severe strains if carried out unsupervised and for longer periods.
- If there are open wounds or recent surgery then stretching is strongly contraindicated.
- Stretching should be used if there are mild to moderate muscular strains but if you try to stretch severely strained muscle then it can worsen the condition.
Finally, owing to these awesome benefits of stretching, you should include it in your daily routine as soon as possible. Daily 10 to 15 minutes of stretching is enough to combat your physical and mental stress. But try not to let this therapy overtake your other fitness regimes. Always keep in mind, Balance is the Key, so perform stretching while not ignoring your other fitness activities.