“Do I really need to stretch after exercise?” I hear you ask. And the answer is YES!
When you exercise your muscles go through multiple contractions, leaving them in a shortened state by the end of a workout. Performing static stretches post-exercise helps to restore some length to your muscles, encouraging them to return to their natural position. Stretching after you exercise also helps with posture, blood circulation and easing the potential of soreness and tightness of muscles in the days after your training session.
We have provided a stretching routine in all our FitTins and you can find an example of all those stretches below…
Stand near a wall for balance. Transfer your weight into your left leg and bend at your right knee to raise your right foot towards your bum. Catch your foot with your right hand. Bring your knees together and gently pull on your foot for a stretch through your right quad muscle. Hold for ten seconds and then repeat with your left leg.
Place your left foot slightly in front of your right foot, hip width apart. Bend through your right knee and lower your bum down towards the ground, while keeping your left leg as straight as possible. Tilt forward from the hips and bring your bum as close to the ground as you can for a stretch through your left hamstring. Hold for ten seconds and then repeat with your right leg.
Step your right foot forward and drop your left knee down to the ground directly under your hip. Firstly tilt your pelvis under and then gently lean forward towards your front foot for a stretch through your left hip flexor. Hold for ten seconds and then repeat with your left foot forward and your right knee on the ground.
In a standing position, take hold of your left elbow with your right hand and gently pull your left arm across your body in front of you to stretch through your left shoulder. Hold this position for ten seconds and then repeat with your right arm. To make this stretch slightly stronger, try tilting the hand of the arm you are stretching, palm towards you so your thumb faces downwards.
In a standing position, reach your left arm towards the sky then bend at the elbow to reach your left hand back and down between your shoulder blades. Take hold of your left elbow with your right hand and gently push down to get a stretch through your left tricep. Hold this position for ten seconds and then repeat with your right arm.
In a standing position with both arms by your side, take your hands behind your body and link your fingers together. Gently push down and backwards to open up through your chest and stretch through your chest muscles. Hold this position for ten seconds and then release.
In a standing position, bring your arms up in front of your body to shoulder height. Clasp your hands together and gently roll your shoulders forward and pull your hands as far away from the body as possible to stretch through your upper back. Hold this position for ten seconds and release. To make this stretch slightly stronger, tilt your chin down towards your chest while hold the stretch.
If you get stuck and need any additional guidance, please send us a message at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’d be happy to help.