Most of us have busy lives and ever-changing schedules. We therefore often find it difficult to find the time to exercise. Although our centres boast a fantastic range of state-of-the art equipment, sometimes you prefer to workout at home, enjoy a brisk walk or heart racing run. Whichever way you prefer to work up a sweat, it’s always important to remember to stretch!
Stretching and Home Workouts
Stretching should be an integral part of every person’s home workout program as flexibility is one of the five most important components of fitness. It helps to prevent injuries, promotes circulation and prepares our bodies for their home or gym-based workout.
Here are our top 10 reasons to why you should be adding stretching as part of your regular training regime.
1. Reduce Your Risk of Injury
The more flexible you are, the less likely you are to get injured from a slightly excessive movement. By increasing the range of motion in a joint through stretching, you can decrease the resistance on your muscles during your home workout.
2. Increases Range of Motion
Stretching helps improve your range of motion which may also slow the degeneration of the joints.
3. Improves Posture
Stretching the muscles of the lower back, shoulders and chest will help keep your back in better alignment and improve your posture.
4. Improves Mechanical Efficiency and Overall Functional Performance
As stretching makes you more flexible and a flexible joint requires less energy to move through a wider range of motion, it can improve your overall performance by making your movement more efficient.
5. Helps Reduce or Manage Stress
If stretch properly, your muscles hold less tension and can, therefore, help you feel less stressed.
6. Reduces Muscular Tension and Enhances Muscular Relaxation
It allows your muscles to relax. Habitually tense muscles tend to cut off their own circulation resulting in a lack of oxygen and essential nutrients getting to the muscles.
7. Prepares the Body for the Stress of Exercise
Stretching prior to exercise allows the muscles to loosen up and become resistant to the impact they are about to undergo, thereby reducing the chance of injury.
8. Promotes Circulation
Stretching increases blood supply to the muscles and joints which allow for greater nutrient transportation and improves the circulation of blood through the entire body.
9. Decreases the Risk of Lower Back Pain
Flexibility in the hamstrings, hip flexors and muscles attached to the pelvis relieves stress on the lumbar spine which in turn reduces the risk of lower back pain.
10. Helps Relieve Post-Exercise Aches and Pains
After a hard workout, stretching the muscles will keep them loose and reduce the shortening and tightening effect that can happen after a workout, leading to post-workout aches and pains.