Stretching is a critical component of a healthy workout routine, and jumping on it could result in feeling a bit stiff the next day.
Tim Waanders, a physical therapist at Finish Line Physical Therapy in New York, says flexibility is crucial because it allows the muscles and joints to move through a full range of motion. If your flexibility is limited, it can place stress on other structures or muscle groups that aren’t able to handle an increased load.”
Your Posture Can Get Sloppy
In terms of our posture, many of us are deficient at the beginning because we sit for long hours. “If you find yourself sitting all day, the muscles in the front of your chest and your upper body can get tight.
Waanders said, “Eventually a person will develop muscular imbalances, and this will increase pain because certain muscles are shortened, which then puts the neurological system in overdrive.”
It Is Easy To Get Injured
Your muscles are no longer what physical therapists call an optimum length-tension relationship when you don’t stretch.
Waanders said, “It usually leads to injury. The most common injuries are tendonitis or muscle strains depending on which muscles carry excessive loads. It can cause arthritis because the joints aren’t moving the way they should be due to limited flexibility.”
How To Properly Stretch
When it comes to post-workout stretching, you’ll want to focus on the static stretching where you keep the motion going, such as a calf, quad, or hamstring stretch or a cross-body shoulder stretch.
Dynamic stretches, movements such as walking cracks or squats, are better pre-workout as they help the body warm-up, while static stretches tend to allow your body to cool down as a result of an activity.
Waanders said, “Mobility and flexibility exercises need to be done every day to see lasting change and progress.”