Why Stretching is Just as Important as Exercise

Muscles, just like other tissues in our body, require proper circulation and for us to keep them healthy! We spend most of our day in the same posture. Let’s face it, most of us aren’t conscious of our posture 100% of our work day.  By not stretching, we continue to overuse and fatigue our muscles, making them short and tight.  Consequently, our body forms adhesions and connective tissue that is not needed, decreased circulation, decreased flexibility, and increased aches and pain. Stretching can help both your body and your mind and soul!

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For the body:

  • Improve your flexibility and range of motion
  • Corrects posture by lengthening tight muscles that pull areas of the body away from their intended position. Because so many of us spend time looking at computer screens or looking down at your phones, many of us have tight chest muscles which pulls the shoulders and head forward, leaving us with a hunched shoulder look
  • Potential to reduce the risk of injury by preparing muscles for work before activity
  • Increases blood and nutrient supply to the muscles to reduce muscle soreness

For the mind:

  • Just a simple, short break (5-15 minutes) of stretching can ease and calm the mind to allow your body to recharge and increase your energy level for the rest of the day
  • Pilates offers you a chance to spend an hour releasing tension, both physically and mentally

Key Tips for your Weekly Stretching

  • Focus most of your stretching after your workout. Begin your workout with a dynamic warmup to warm your muscles. Stretch hamstrings, piriformis, and quads for one minute each after the workout when your muscles are already warm
  • Include one long-duration flexibility session each week – choose your own at home flexibility program or a program such as Pilates for 45-60 minutes each week
  • Foam rolling!

Try this program and note the difference in how much healthier and amazing your body feels!