Stretching is a system that includes exercises for stretching muscles, flexibility and mobility in the joints. Classes are used as an independent form of health-improving exercises or as part of other types of fitness and are included in the training program for professional athletes. The benefits of stretching are confirmed by the works of American and Swedish scientists and no modern coach or sports doctor is no longer in doubt.
Let’s find out why stretching is useful, what harm it can do, how to practice this type of fitness correctly and whether the exercises will help to lose weight.
Benefits of Stretching for Men and Women
With age, most people lose flexibility, joint mobility decreases, and muscle discomfort becomes more frequent. This greatly reduces the quality of life – even the usual bending and turning of the head can cause severe pain.
Stretching exercises help to lengthen the muscles, making more elastic the ligaments that connect them. Thanks to this, you maintain freedom of movement and joint strength and significantly simplify your daily life. It’s safe to say that stretching prolongs youth.
When performing exercises from the stretching complex, muscle fibers are activated by contraction in response to stretching. A reflex reaction from the nervous system stimulates the processes in the muscles and ligaments tendon apparatus.
During stretching exercises, muscles are relaxed and tensed one by one, helping you quickly release tension, relax, and restore lost strength.
Types of Stretching
While you get into stretching, you feel like creating a CasinoChan login for the first time because there are so many options to choose from. There are several varieties of stretching, each based on different methods of muscle tension and relaxation:
- Static. It’s used at the end of a workout to relieve muscle tension (and as an independent form of fitness). A certain stretching posture is held for 30-60 seconds, then the body smoothly returns to its starting position.
- Dynamic. Holding a static posture at the endpoint occurs after several repetitions of slow springing movements.
- Ballistic. Muscles are stretched by dynamic thrusting movements or torso flexion performed with great amplitude.
- PNF stretching (proprioceptive neuromuscular stretching). A type of therapeutic muscle stretching. It is used to restore joint mobility after injuries or surgery. The muscle must first be tensed for 6 seconds, then brought into a static stretching position for 10-30 seconds.
- Active-isolated. The essence of this method is to tense and stretch the muscle opposite to that to be stretched. Each exercise is repeated 8-12 times. Allows you to strengthen weak muscles or restore them after an injury. Less painful than traditional stretching.
- With a partner. A variant of static stretching that involves the help of another person. Useful for stretching tight muscles, which it is problematic to work out by oneself.
- Aerostretching. Stretching the muscles on hammocks in the air. Thanks to its use, it can significantly reduce the load on the joints, relax the spine, and engage more muscle groups. The exercises are not suitable for beginners, as the risk of injury is high.
It’s possible to combine several stretching methods in one workout or stop at any one of them. There is no type of stretching that is suitable for absolutely everyone. We all have different physiques and levels of fitness and have different goals. So it’s necessary to experiment with different methods, choosing the one that will be most comfortable.
Does Stretching Help You Lose Weight?
Stretching itself is not an energy-consuming activity. The number of calories consumed in 1 hour of exercise is less than 150. They can easily be replaced by a couple of apples.
But stretching helps to lose weight. But to do this, you need to combine exercise with cardio and strength training. When the muscles are more elastic and the joints are more mobile, the amplitude of movements increases significantly. By performing exercises in which amplitude affects calorie expenditure (e.g., squats, leg swings), you can burn a lot more fat with good stretching.
Stretching helps to increase the effectiveness of intense workouts for fat burning and reduces body volume by reducing accumulated fluid in problem areas.
What Stretching After a Workout Does
Stretching after a workout helps you avoid injuries and speed up the recovery process. During physical activity muscles contract and return to their original state not immediately but within several days. Without recovery, they cannot build up strength and withstand the intensity of the workout. Stretching at the end of the session helps to bring the muscle tissues back to their original state much faster.
If you don’t do stretching after a workout, muscle recovery is delayed, which means the effectiveness of the exercises is reduced. This leads to stagnation in strength and endurance growth.