When you’re in the swing of a fitness routine, you may emphasize the importance of building muscle mass and improving your aerobic fitness over proper preparation before a workout. You won’t be able to reach your goals in a healthy, sustainable way, though, without good physical flexibility. Numerous peer-reviewed studies emphasize the short- and long-term benefits of regular stretching, such as enhanced performance, improved posture, reduced stress, and more. It takes time to build up flexibility, so you shouldn’t expect to be able to touch your toes in just 2 sessions if you can’t already. The good news is that stretching has a cumulative effect, and doing so on a regular basis helps increase your range of motion.
Some of the reasons it’s important to stretch pre-workout include:
- Improved health: The body has certain physiological responses to muscular tension, including reduction of blood pressure and improved breathing rate.
- Reduced risk of injury: A well-conditioned athlete is less likely to injure themselves. Cold muscles and/or tendons are more likely to rupture or be strained/sprained.
- Enhanced performance: Any well-rounded fitness regiment should include regular flexibility training. Regular stretching enhances muscle strength, agility, power, and speed.
- Improved circulation: Blood flow improves with regular stretching, which allows better transportation of oxygen- and nutrient-rich blood throughout the body.
- Minimized stress on joints: The joints move better and move more freely in all directions with regular stretching. This means less stress on the body and no unnecessary war and tear on chronically tight muscles.
- Decreased stress: Chronic stress has a systemic effect, meaning it can create fatigue, tension, and more. Stretching regularly can reduce stress and decrease symptoms of anxiety and depression. Mindful breathing in combination with stretching also improves mood.
Properly warming up before physical activity is crucial to prevent injury and maximize your workout. Your pre-workout stretching regimen helps make the body more flexible and therefore enhances your performance.
Looking to learn more on how to enhance your fitness? Contact us at ProFysio at (732) 812-5200 or schedule your FREE initial consultation online today.