Hip flexor stretch to improve hip extension, related to balance in ½ kneeling position. Try to make your feet cover one line. Hold for 20 seconds on each side.

In difficult times (and in general), it is very important to take care of yourself – of your mental state and, of course, of your body. Learn how to do this by stretching.

Why do you need stretching?

The positive effects that stretching has on the body can be listed almost endlessly.

Immediately after the session, the state of health and mood improves, one feels lightness and self-confidence. With regular training, the metabolism is activated, weight is lost, endurance and coordination of movements improve, discomfort and stiffness in the muscles disappear.

Plus, stretching helps recover from stressful situations and teaches you to immerse yourself no worse than meditation. But the main benefit of stretching is that the exercises are accessible to most people, regardless of their athletic skills.

Who should try stretching:

  • those who regularly and actively practice sports: runners, swimmers and triathletes;
  • those who go to the gymnasium;
  • those who are about to start their sports career: exercises will prepare the joints and ligaments and help prevent primary injuries (learn more about dynamic stretching for beginners here )

It is better to postpone classes if…

  • you have joint and ligament problems;
  • you have spinal conditions, arthritis, osteoporosis, hernia or thrombosis;
  • you have recently suffered a serious injury

How often to practice

Beginners should start slowly and stretch for about 15 minutes a day for this sport to become a habit. Trained athletes can immediately switch to group training, which lasts approximately 60 minutes.

To feel the benefits of stretching, including long-term ones, it is best to exercise at least twice a week.

How to prepare

Stretching is a complete workout, so before you start you should warm up your whole body. A brisk walk on the treadmill for 5-10 minutes and an intense 20-minute warm-up for joint mobility until you’re sweating lightly are ideal.

Warming up increases the speed of metabolic processes, the volume of circulating blood and joint fluid, which makes the joints more mobile. All this facilitates the stretching process, also increases the effectiveness of training and reduces the risk of injury.

There is an opinion to take a hot shower or go to the sauna before training – supposedly, this way exercises are easier to perform. In fact, this is a myth – only a high quality product warm up can prepare the body for this type of stress (but a hot bath after a workout will help you recover faster).

The most common mistakes in developing body flexibility

It is quite difficult for beginner athletes with little training experience to figure out all the intricacies of stretching exercises on their own. At the same time, many do not even suspect that his improper conduct can lead to negative consequences in the form of damage to the tendons and the appearance of problems with maintaining balance. Therefore, when stretching, try not to make the mistakes described below.

Too deep stretching of muscles and joints

Excessive stretching of the spinal muscle, multiaxial joints (shoulder, hip, etc.) can lead to the body’s inability to retain additional weight. In this case, it is generally forbidden to conduct high-intensity training: you can injure yourself on a “loose” joint.

Sudden movements during stretching

This mistake is very often made by girls who want to quickly sit on the twine. Exercises to develop flexibility with even small pushes and jerks can cause micro tears to form in the muscle fibers. Therefore, when stretching, it is extremely important to maintain a leisurely pace of exercise and to move as gently as possible. Remember that the key to good muscle stretching is progression. Therefore, allow them to recover fully and do not try to achieve good results in a short time, while neglecting the health of ligaments and joints.

Sprain

In an effort to make your body more flexible and plastic, work on developing elasticity in muscles, not ligaments. Pay close attention to your exercise technique to ensure maximum performance and safety, and follow these tips:

To reduce the intensity of physical activity aimed at the ligaments, slightly bend the knees while stretching the leg muscles.

Sitting on the cross string, try to turn your toes up. This will help reduce stress on the ankle joints.

If stretching is accompanied by pain, check the technique of the exercise. The cause of pain can also be too high intensity of the load, which has an excessive effect on unprepared muscles, ligaments and joints. The way out of this situation is to select a simpler set of exercises that suits you at the current stage of flexibility development.

Not letting the body regenerate

After a workout of any kind, muscles need rest. Too frequent stretching of the muscles (2 or more times a day) damages them, which will reverse the results already obtained. At the same time, you should not delay the rest period for more than 3 days, otherwise the effect of the workouts will be minimal. So, the best option for beginner athletes is to stretch three times a week for 30-50 minutes.

If you’re stretching to improve your overall fitness, do so within 10-15 minutes of your main workout. And don’t forget your oversized chair in the corner of the room, rest is important.

Frivolous attitude towards classes

It is unrealistic to achieve good sports results with a frivolous attitude to classes. Plan your time so that you can regularly attend training for the development of plasticity and flexibility, and strictly adhere to the schedule. Be patient and do not shorten the duration of scheduled lessons.

Lack of awareness of why stretching is necessary

As mentioned earlier, many women and girls eventually want to sit on the twine. However, few people know how much time and effort it takes to achieve this goal. Therefore, before you start serious muscle stretching work, think carefully: is it really necessary that you can sit on a string if you have nothing to do with gymnastics in general?

Poor balance during stretching exercises

Remember that you cannot stretch the muscles of just one body part. So, pulling the muscles of the left leg, you need to repeat the same with the right. After stretching the abdominal muscles, give the same attention to the back muscles.

What to take for training

Studios usually have their own mats, but it’s best to bring your own, which you’re used to. Yoga mats are suitable, which cannot be said of tourist mats: they slip on the surface and interfere with proper physical exercise.

It is also better to buy a special sports bottle – both practical and environmentally friendly.

Last but not least, get a set of clothes that won’t get in the way of your movement and that’s stretchy enough not to tear in the wrong place at the wrong time :D.