Not taking the time to stretch before exercising is as wrong as not doing it at the end of the routine. Previous muscle heating prevents certain injuries or cramps.
So in this article, we offer you the best stretches to perform before exercising.
The role of stretching prior to sport
With a series of movements before the beginning of the routine, we can prepare the muscles and keep them flexible as well as avoid injuries or back pain.
The stretch is a preventive measure also for the joints.
By stretching we improve sports performance. And is that if the muscles are not flexible we miss their full potential and we assume a greater effort in the movements of the routine.
Although the stretches are simple, there are some issues that we should keep in mind to do them correctly without hurting ourselves.
As a first step, it is good to know the differences between the previous elongation and the subsequent training.
- The former is responsible for preparing the muscles and joints so that they can react to different physical stimuli (different from what we do in other daily activities). The movements must be slow and careful so that the body temperature is gradually increased and we are ready for the intense exercise.
- The opposite happens when we finish the routine since the stretches serve to eliminate the typical tensions of the sport, to reduce the muscular pain and to contribute to a good circulation. They also help in the regeneration phase of the tissues and to rest the muscle fibers.
But, beware that stretching too can also be harmful because it increases the chances of ligament injuries and separation or dislocation of joints.
The recommended elongation time is up to 30 seconds per muscle. When stretching after exercise, it is critical to do so when the body has not cooled.
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Different types of elongation according to the area worked
They can be used both at the beginning and at the end of the exercise routine. The idea is to pay more attention to the area for work or greater participation during the session.
It is very important to do them gradually and slowly so as not to feel exhaustion or pain.
Some interesting stretches are:
- To stretch your waist, kneel on the floor and lean sideways with one arm resting on the floor.
- Lift the other arm and pull it over your head.
- You can also do it standing up. Do not forget to change sides.
- Standing, he takes the heel towards the thigh and holds the leg with his hand. Apply a little force to the body.
- If you cannot keep your balance lean against a wall or look at a fixed point.
- Sit on the floor or mat and extend your legs together.
- Hold your toes with your hands and press down with your torso.
- If you do not get to stretch completely, at least leave the arms as close as possible (for example, by holding ankles or knees).
- Stand in front of a wall and support the tips of your fingers.
- It exerts pressure by leaving the heel on the ground.
Another option is to use a step:
- Support only the toes and let the foot “fall” down. You can also raise and lower the instep.
- To stretch the inside of your legs, squat down and stretch one leg to the side.
- Try to touch the tip of the feet with your hands and keep your balance by leaning your free palm on the floor.
- Bend your arm and bring your hand back of the head.
- Take the elbow with your other hand to exert pressure.
- The idea is that the elbow is “glued” to the ear.
- Stretch your arm in front of the body and put your hand as if you want to say “stop” (with your fingers up).
- Take your fingers with your other hand and press against it.
- Change by putting your fingers down and repeating the pressure.
- Standing with his arms at the sides of the body, he rotates his shoulders in a circle, first forwards and then backward.
- You can also move the arms in 360 °.
- Stand up and leave your back as straight as possible.
- Bring your head back very slowly (to make the stretch bigger open your mouth), wait a few seconds and return to the starting position.
- Another option is to turn your head as you make circles first from the right and then from the left.
We recommend that all stretching exercises before or after exercise be directed by a teacher or coach. He will be the one to tell you if they are right or how to get more out of them.
It is essential that you do not overload the muscles before starting the routine: otherwise, in the middle of the session, you will be very tired or sore. Do not dismiss the power of good elongation before the sport. It may be the one that prevents you from getting hurt or feeling some kind of discomfort the other day.
It is as important as stretching at the end of the class. Take 5 minutes before and after and you will see the results.
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