Stretching may not be seen as something to be done for non-athletes or regular people that go about their day without being involved in any form of physical activity. However, this common misconception could not be any more wrong and is the reason why so many folks complain about chronic aches and pain throughout their body. Stretching should be mandatory, whether or not one chooses to lead a physically active lifestyle (although it is highly recommended that you are physically active). Without further ado, let us commence with the reasons as to why stretching is so important and hopefully convince you to start stretching immediately.
Stretching for The Body
The main reason why stretching is needed is to improve the flexibility and range of motion of your muscles. The more one stretches, the stronger and healthier their muscles become. This is largely due to the way the muscles function. When used often, muscles become short and tight, and without stretching, a muscle becomes weak over time, eventually losing its flexibility and strength. This is the reason why most people that lead a sedentary lifestyle without stretching tend to complain of aches in their lower body, shoulder and neck.
Besides preventing the loss of flexibility and muscle function, stretching helps prevent injuries. Think of it this way: when you stretch, you are essentially preparing your muscles to bear a load that is heavier. Not only does blood flow to the specific muscle when it is stretched, it becomes warmed up and thus movement becomes easier and smoother, preventing injuries.
Finally, stretching is important, especially for those who are physically active as it helps supply nutrients to the muscles. Stretching is important because stretching increases blood supply and improves blood flow. This leads to less soreness and alleviates discomfort.
Stretching for The Mind
Of course, stretching is not only important for the body, but also for the mind. Because stretching allows you to release tension, it is an extremely effective way of stress relief. Most people feel calmer just by stretching which is why Pilates is such an efficient physical activity for both the mind and the body. In addition, you will also feel invigorated when you stretch, improving your energy levels almost immediately.
Now that you know what stretching does for the body, it’s time to start a stretching routine regularly. You’re bound to see the effects from stretching in just a short span of time and before long, you’ll be the healthiest version of yourself!