Flexibility is an important component of physical fitness and has many positive effects on the body. For instance, it improves mobility, posture, muscle coordination, reduces the risk of injuries and muscle soreness. It even leads to a better overall “shape”. It mainly increases your range of motion and makes it easier for you to perform certain exercises. Flexibility can occur not just through stretching but also through foam rolling or daily exercises. Basically, stretching before working out increases blood flow in the muscles. If you don’t work on your flexibility regularly, muscles shorten with time: best example is the hip flexor because we’re sitting too much. Limited flexibility feels like “stiffness”, restricts you in your daily life and when you’re exercising.
ADVANCED W/ STRENGTHENING
What is dynamic stretching?
Dynamic stretching exercises are – like the name implies – performed dynamically at/until the edge of your range of motion. They are active movements of muscle that lead to a stretch but are not held in the end position. Hence, they serve two goals: warming up and increasing flexibility. If performed with caution, they can be used in a dynamic warmup. In general your range of motion/reach will be higher the warmer your muscles are. You can even include them in your workout – do some of them during rest periods to make use of the time in between. If you include them in your warm up or in the rest time in your workout you can gain flexibility in the long term.
What is static stretching?
Static stretching exercises are for example when you get into a stretching position until you feel tension and hold it for 20-30 seconds. However, not all of them are suitable for a warmup – simply because your muscles should be properly warmed up before they are stretched.