For all kinds of people, stretching can be a bit of a drag. It is oftentimes an afterthought, or just one more thing you have to make time for if your schedule runs round-the-clock. And if you’re not too flexible to begin with, where’s the motivation to bend and twist your body?
Stretching: More than Yoga
If you typically associate stretching with yoga mats and colorful leggings, you’re missing the point! While traditional yoga incorporates focused stretching into various routines, stretching is something you can do entirely on your own, almost anywhere, and at any skill level.
Simply put, stretching is the deliberate lengthening of muscles that helps you not only improve flexibility, but also joint range of motion. It’s a crucial component of wellness in rehabilitation programs, athletic routines and also everyday life.
How Does it Benefit Me?
Let’s jump to the fun part. Why should we stretch so often? It does more than make your muscles feel good and loosen you up. Check out these other benefits:
It Gives You a Mental Break
With stress or anxiety, muscles become tight and tense — especially around the neck, back and shoulders. Stretching releases this tension and offers a welcome release of endorphins.
It Improves Your Circulation
Combat blood clots, tingling sensations and more with stretching because it improves blood flow to your muscles. Blood flow also eliminates waste and nourishes muscles.
It Boost Flexibility and Range of Motion
Both of these will help you in your daily life, such as bending over to pick-up something you dropped or even doing chores around the house. They also help with fitness-related activities.
It Improves Your Posture
Regular stretches keep your muscles from getting tight which aids with posture. Better posture not only alleviates pain and discomfort, but also benefits your bones and joints.
It Enhances Coordination
When you have full range of motion, it’s easier to stay balanced. This effect can greatly benefit you if you have a fitness plan or if you’re just looking to prevent falls and physical injuries.
Make Stretching a Habit
To fully reap the benefits of stretching, incorporate it into your daily routine! Take a few moments to practice after you wake up, before you retire to bed, and both before and after a workout. If you sit at a desk throughout the day, stretch often to prevent discomfort and soreness. Not to mention, there’s always classes like yoga and Pilates to help you perfect the craft!