Stretching exercises for the whole body
by John Harris Fitness
You've had a hard workout where you pushed yourself to the limit. A quick shower and then straight home from the gym. A good warm-up is a given for most people, but the equally important cool-down is often forgotten. Proper stretching after exercise improves and accelerates recovery and should therefore be a fixed part of your training. Our 4 stretching exercises for your whole body show you that stretching can be fast and effective.
When is stretching useful?
Today we agree that stretching is not an all-purpose weapon. So it's also not useful in every situation. For example, if you have sore muscles or a pulled muscle, it's better not to do it. However, it is very effective in improving the mobility of your joints and preventing tension and imbalances.
Static or dynamic stretching?
There are different ways to stretch your body. In static stretching, you hold one position for 20-30 seconds and then move to the next. Static stretching should only be done when you are already warm, ideally after your workout. This method gives you more flexibility. This is especially important for sports such as dance, martial arts or gymnastics.
With dynamic stretching, you stretch in motion and train your muscles at the same time. You perform swinging movements in which you repeatedly go into maximum stretching. However, you should not overdo it, because with too much swing, you can injure yourself. You can stretch dynamically at any time during your workout, for example, to relieve cramps. Dynamic stretching is especially suitable for strength athletes, but also soccer players or track and field athletes.
3 multifunctional stretching exercises for the whole body
Sit in the straddle position. Open your legs as wide as possible so that you feel the stretch. Now try to move your arms and upper body as far forward as possible until you can eventually rest your upper body on the floor. You can also pull your upper body sideways to your legs. This will stretch several areas of your body at once, your legs, hip muscles, back and side abdominal muscles.
The lunge is an all-purpose weapon for flexibility in your legs. You can either go low and brace your arms on the floor while doing it, or brace yourself against the wall and lean forward. Then, pull the heel of your back leg toward the floor. This will stretch your calf. While lunging, you can also push your hips forward to stretch your hips.
Raise legs (dynamic)
This exercise is also perfect for warming up for your cardio workout and also trains your balance. Stand on one leg and pull your other leg bent with your arms towards your body. Then alternate the leg over and over. You can also move the raised leg slightly back and forth or rotate it, so you train the deep muscles in the standing leg.
Arm circles (dynamic)
Also in the warm-up you can let your arms circle. Try different directions - forwards, backwards, in the same direction, in the opposite direction - to give your brain a little more work. Make sure you are stable and actively relax your neck. Your shoulders are free. The maximum arm circles increase flexibility in your shoulders.