FORM Hand, Wrist & Elbow Institute

What are the Benefits of Stretching?

Often you would have heard that stretching is good for the body. There was a time when people used to stretch before exercising; athletes usually stretched before exerting themselves to avoid any pull or injury. However, recent studies suggest that static stretching might hamper your performance. For instance, runners may run slow, or jumpers may jump less high. Stretching should not be confined to before or after exercising but at any time of the day. You may do it whenever you’ve been sitting for a long at a desk or if you’ve been involved in any activity and feel the need to stretch, you may do it.

There are many benefits to regular stretching. It increases your flexibility, improves posture, and reduces stress, aches, and more. Stretching a muscle should be done when it is short. More people do it to loosen up, while some prefer warm-up with front and back kicks, squats, lunges, hip circles, and more. Let us delve deeper into some of the benefits of stretching.

Improves flexibility

Flexibility is always beneficial for a person’s overall health. Remember, it allows a person to move around more comfortably and perform everyday tasks more efficiently. It may help delay the signs of aging, such as reduced joint mobility.

Increases range of motion

More flexibility allows you to move a joint through its full range, which gives you freedom and greater comfort during your physical activities. Static stretching involves stretching and then holding a muscle, whereas dynamic makes your muscle stretch more dynamic with each stretch. Research suggests stretching may help with motion, improving stiffness and increasing muscle strength.

Improves performance in physical activities

Dynamic stretches before any physical activity help prepare your muscles. It improves your performance in athletic activities. Before starting any physical activity, dynamic stretching may help.

Helps with the blood flow

If you are stretching regularly, it will help improve your blood flow. It may help shorten your recovery time and help reduce muscle soreness.

Improves your posture

Muscle imbalances are common and can affect your posture. Studies found that strengthening and stretching specific muscles can help align and reduce musculoskeletal pain.

Prevents back pain

Tight muscles can strain your muscles during movement. If you stretch, it may strengthen your back and reduce the risk of injury.

Relieves stress

Your muscles tighten when stressed, and stretching can help lengthen the muscles to relieve tension.

Helps with tension headaches

Tension and headaches can affect your daily life. With a healthy diet and rest, stretching may help reduce the tension you feel from headaches.