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Blog Why Flexibility Training is Important for Optimal Fitness

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Why Flexibility Training is Important for Optimal Fitness

  • by Michelle
  • April 18, 2012

 

Other than avid “yogi’s” (those who partake in yoga on a regular basis), many people neglect the flexibility/stretching side of their workout routine.  I have written previous articles on the importance of performing dynamic stretches for pre-workout warm-up and static stretches for post-workout recovery; however, I find that majority of people neglect this post-workout portion.  Even though it only takes approximately 10 minutes to perform a few stretches after a workout people seem to skip out on this because they are eager to get out of the gym after a workout.  I admit I am even guilty of this occasionally and let me tell you that I do notice a difference in the overall feeling and performance of my body if I neglect myself of some quality stretching time.  I personally have committed myself to at least one class (two if my schedule will allow it) of hot yoga per week in order to make sure I get in at least one solid session of stretching to keep my body functioning optimally, prevent muscle imbalances, and reduce my risk for injury; however, I also make it a point to stretch for at least 5-10 minutes after each workout.

Here are some reasons why you should get in the habit of performing a static stretching routine post-workout.

 

**NOTE: it’s important to perform static (slow long hold) stretching after a workout, or a proper warm-up, when your muscles are warm and more pliable to be most effective and prevent injury.

  • Decreased risk of injury from sports or everyday basic activities with the rationale that a limb will be able to move through a larger range of motion before an injury occurs.
  • Maintain range of motion in your joints.  This is especially important when strength training because you are building new muscle and want this muscle to be long and lengthened not tight.  Shortened muscles will begin to affect posture, joint range of motion, and overall body mechanics.
  • Appear longer and leaner because muscles will be lengthened and improved posture will help you stand up straight.
  • Improved physical performance because a flexible joint will have the ability to move through a greater range of motion and will require less energy to do so.
  • Post exercise stretching can also aid in workout recovery, decrease muscle soreness, and ensure that muscle and tendons are in good working order.

Remember a complete health and fitness regimen consists of a happy medium between cardiovascular, strength, and flexibility training all in combination with a healthy eating. 

 

Email Michelle@CORE-Condition.com if you have any questions about flexibility training and what stretches might work best for you.

 

Michelle Roots BA Kin, CSCS, PES

www.CORE-Condition.com