Post-workout stretches are crucial for avoiding injuries and improving your overall flexibility and mobility. Stretching after a workout is a key component of an effective training program and should be implemented to ensure better functional training while keeping your joints healthy and mobilized.
Let us explore some reasons why post-workout stretches are so important.
Stretches serve a similar function as warming up with lower weights in that they stretch and loosen up the muscles to prepare for rigorous activity.
Many people who hit the gym often fail to include these into their workout programs and may suffer consequences such as a lack of adequate flexibility and risk of injury from insufficient time spent warming up.
Stretching is a key factor that reduces the effects of delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) because it allows the muscles to loosen up and regain their elasticity.
To optimize your training program, you should incorporate some form of post-workout stretching, which doesn't have to be more than 15 minutes for you to notice its benefits. Going hard for too long can cause your muscles to tighten up and lead to injuries if you do not spend adequate time improving your body's ability to recover from grueling workout sessions.
Dynamic Stretches vs Static Stretches
There are two main types of stretches people can benefit from: static stretches and dynamic stretches.
Static stretching involves getting into a stretched position and staying there for some time, usually 30 to 60 seconds for one set that you can do 3 to 5 times.
Dynamic stretching incorporates movement through a full range of motion and involves stretching and warming up the muscles, joints, and ligaments to prepare for exercise.
You’d be better off placing static stretches at the end of your workouts because they effectively reduce the effects of DOMS, i.e. feelings of soreness the day after a rigorous training session.
Some studies have shown that static stretching before you begin your workout can result in injury, which is why you shouldn't take that risk and implement them at the end of your workout session.
Dynamic stretches can be placed before or after your workouts and decrease the risk of injury by improving blood flow into your muscles, thereby achieving a lubrication effect.
Everyone should utilize post-workout stretches if they're looking to sustain their workout regimes over a long time-period.