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The Importance of Stretching: A Basic Guide


What comes to mind when you think of ways to keep fit? Running? Lifting weights? Spinning?  

How about stretching? While you'll see athletes stretching before a run and aerobics instructors stretching after exercise, many of us overlook the importance of stretching.

We're not just talking about stretching before and after exercise either. Stretching benefits so many different aspects of our health and wellbeing that it's something we should all be doing every day, regardless of whether we've exercised or not. 

Are you keen to learn more about the benefits of stretching? Keep reading to find out how stretching could help you!

The Benefits of Stretching

To understand how important daily stretching is, let's take a look at some of the different ways stretching can improve your health:

Flexibility and Range of Motion - Regular stretching can increase your flexibility and range of motion, making it easier to perform everyday activities with ease. Stretching every day also helps delay the reduced mobility that can come as we age. 

Circulation - Stretching out your muscles gets your blood flowing to your muscles and can improve your circulation. 

Pain Relief - Stretching helps strengthen your muscles to relieve existing pain and prevent future pain as a result of muscle strain, especially in your back, legs, hips, and shoulders.

Stress and Tension Headaches - Stretching can also release tension in your body, helping to relieve physical and emotional stress and reduce the chance of tension headaches. 

Posture - By strengthening the muscles in your back and shoulders, stretching can help pull your body into an upright position for improved posture. 

Mood - Slow and purposeful stretching can boost your mood by encouraging focus and mindfulness, while also helping the endocrine system generate feel-good hormones. 

Energy - The best stretches offer a natural energy boost, waking up your body and mind by stimulating the flow of oxygen and blood throughout your body.  

How to Start a Stretching Routine 

Now you know how you can benefit from regular stretching, what are the best stretches to practice daily? 

Start off with stretches that feel easy and natural, like stretching out your arms and back when you wake up. You can then incorporate effective stretches for areas such as your hips, or wherever you tend to experience muscle tightness. Over time, you'll learn how to stretch each muscle, pushing yourself further for optimal results. But make sure to go slow and don't overreach before you're ready. 

As for when to stretch, taking five minutes out of your morning is a great way to turn this healthy practice into a regular habit. You'll find that the energy boost that stretching provides is a great way to wake your mind and body up. Likewise, taking five minutes out of your day to stretch is a great way to get your blood and energy flowing after long periods of sitting or to fight that mid-afternoon energy slump. 

Your Guide to the Importance of Stretching

You may have overlooked the importance of stretching in the past. But now you know how stretching benefits everything from your mood to your posture, we're sure you won't be making that mistake any longer!

For more inspiring insights into everything from tech to education, check out our other blog posts. 


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