We all understand the benefits of getting our daily exercise. These have been proven over and over again. Stretching, however, is just as important yet gets only a fraction of the emphasis. Simply put, if you look at stretching in its most basic form, you’ll see that these actions are the most natural and automatic movements our bodies can perform.
Any martial arts or fitness trainer should insist that all of their students, both children and adults, perform stretching exercises before and after class. You might not understand why it’s important now, but over the course of this post we will break down all the benefits and advantages to stretching.
Stretching Has Its Advantages!
First of all, if you do not stretch out your body on a regular basis you might develop some physical and mental problems. Not stretching can make you more vulnerable to injury and accidents. Getting hurt because you didn’t stretch can be depressing as you will not be able to train for weeks, and sometimes months at at time, while your injuries heal. Therefore, we feel that it’s extremely important to stretch before doing any kind of exercise, especially martial arts in Raleigh NC.
Stretching helps us by increasing muscle and joint flexibility. This allows us to do various exercises and movements better and better over time.
Below you’ll find several advantages and benefits to stretching both before and after your training.
Pre-Training Stretching Exercise Benefits
- Loosens muscles and joints for exercising
- Minimizes risk of injury and accidents
- Makes you more nimble and flexible
- Increases blood supply and oxygen to the body
- Helps with posture correction from sitting or standing all day
- Allows for better focus from mental distractions. Stretching helps to clear the mind
Ideally, you should stretch for between 10 and 15 minutes before training. This will give you plenty of time to warm up and go through your stretching exercises.
Post-Training Stretching Exercise Benefits
After your training class is over, stretching will help to cool your body down from an intense workout. For instance, with BJJ your muscles can sometimes get constricted into difficult positions. Stretching will help to loosen these muscles up which can reduce muscle fatigue the next day.
Stretching is great for helping to clear and calm your mind down after an intense session too. You see, stretching can be like mediation. This is one of the reasons why yoga is so popular. You’ll feel more rejuvenated and less tired if you stretch for 10 – 15 minutes after class.
It’s also important to note that you can overdo stretching which can create pulls, strains, and other injuries.
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