Hey Team So Alpha,
Today we are going to discuss the importance of stretching.
Inflexibility is one of the main causes of injury, pain and tightness.
There are two types of stretching you should be doing: 1. Dynamic Stretching; 2. Static Stretching.
Dynamic Stretch (dynamic warm up): Dynamic Stretch has gained its popularity in the past decade as professional athletes have started using it as a preparation for their sports events. It helps warm up muscles, increase range of motion, activates muscles, enhances muscle performance, helps blood flow and oxygen delivery. So whether you are about to hop into a soccer game, pump iron or run, put in the time and warm up your body, it will pay off in the long term.
Static Stretch: It is important you do static stretching at the END of your workout not in the beginning. It helps relax, stretch, and lengthen your muscles and fascia when your body is at rest. It is important you hold each stretch for 30 seconds because that’s how long it takes for your muscle spindles to relax. Muscle Spindles are sensory receptors which detect changes in the length of a muscle. Basically, they protect your muscles from snapping in half. When you stretch be sure keep and elongated position of target muscles to the point of discomfort (not pain). Static stretching helps prevent the next day soreness, injury, pain.
To sum up, be sure to keep a proper form and breathe. Hydration during and post workout helps your body get rid of any toxins that are released during stretches and exercising.