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Learn To Stretch In A Way That Helps Rather Than Hinders

Before working out, people have to make sure that they’re stretching the proper way.  Getting muscles and tendons loose is one of the best ways to prevent pain and more serious injuries.  Unfortunately, there’s a large number of people who mistakenly believe they are stretching correctly when in fact their actions could compromise a safe workout.

A new report looks at the state of stretching, with the doctor relating her own experiences with patients who claim to stretch a lot but also profess incurring various aches and pains when they work out.  She points out that, when she actually has them show her what they’re doing to stretch, their moves are far from satisfactory.

An individual can start getting ready to exercise safely by getting a handle on those muscles that are giving them trouble during a regular routine.  Various leg muscles will commonly experience aches when involved in an activity that requires a lot of running, while the chest and neck will feel tighter when the person lifts weights.

Also contributing to potential pain in the muscles are those things we do when we’re not working out.  Think about all the ways your daily habits could get the better of even a strenuous workout.  If you sit slumped in your chair at work, or succumb to inactivity in that chair for long stretches of time, your muscles may protest.  Even if you have a more active job that requires constant lifting, the wrong techniques could imperil your muscles more than inactivity would.

So what is the correct way to stretch if so many people are supposedly doing it wrong?  For one thing, you should be able to feel the stretch without actually feeling pain from the stretch.  A high-quality stretch should feel good, not bad.  Not going past your limits also allows you to hold the stretch longer than you otherwise would.

30 seconds is a great time to aim for, and you should be able to hold the stretch a couple times, taking large breaths and not moving back and forth from one position to the next while you’ve actually gotten your muscles into the stretched position.  If you’re doing things right, it should actually become easier to stretch the longer you hold rather than more difficult.

Before stretching, it’s perfectly acceptable to loosen up by lightly jogging or walking at a steady pace.  It’s also important that you stretch after you’re actually finished working out.  That way, your muscles are eased into a less active state rather than forced into it quickly.  When you start to feel less and less pain, your body will thank you for it.


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