7 Reasons Why You Should Stretch Your Body
6 March 2021, Saturday
Yoga trainers usually include “stretching” in their recommended exercise routine, but few actually explain why you should stretch your body. This article will delve deep into its true importance and what it does to the body. Below are some of the amazing benefits derived from stretching that impact overall health and fitness:
Why you should keep muscles strong and flexible according to research
Stretching helps maintain muscle flexibility and strength. Without regular stretching exercises, the muscles can contract and become tight. For example, unstretched muscles caused by prolonged sitting may lead to tight hamstrings later on. This leads to limited range of motion, soreness, and even injury in some cases.
The problem with weak muscles is that they become unfit for exercise and strenuous activity. These muscles are not ready when needed to be used for running or playing a sport. Forcing these muscles to work will only increase the risks of strain, injury and damage.
The solution? Perform stretching exercises on a regular basis. Here at Real Yoga, we support you with appropriate stretching routines that correspond with your unique anatomy and level of fitness.
Why is our body circulation important? Do you have good body circulation?
When you stretch, the impact from it first goes to your fascia, followed by the tendon and ligament. This process will supply oxygen, increase the supply of blood, and bring about balance to our autonomic nervous system.
More nutrients are delivered to muscles as a result of increased blood flow. Carbon dioxide, ammonia, uric acid and other metabolic wastes are removed. Because of this improved circulation, muscles are able to function properly and in peak form.
The benefits of stretching go beyond muscle development and growth. Did you know that it also helps improve lung and heart function? Regular stretching and breathing exercises help body systems distribute oxygen more efficiently. In the long run, this equates to lower risks of suffering from heart disease, stroke, and other serious illnesses.
Are your muscles sore after exercise? If so, do you know why?
For some people, stretching can be painful while for others it is perfectly fine. Why is this so? Is this soreness that you feel after a yoga class normal?
According to research by our founder Master Saumik, pain or soreness should not always be treated as a “normal” after-effect of stretching. In fact, a good stretching routine should be able to avoid or minimize pain after exercise. Feeling sore in your joints and muscles can be a sign of overstretching. This can be counterintuitive to what you are trying to achieve it’s a telltale sign that you might be reaching far beyond your body’s ability.
Understanding that each individual’s anatomy is different, the classes at Real Yoga puts the focus on you and your ability, rather than achieving the ‘perfect’ alignment.
As our Real Yoga founder, Master Saumik emphasizes, “We believe that every individual’s body is unique and thus the practice of the same pose cannot be the same. Safe practice is more important than achievement practice.”
Observe your posture in front of a mirror – is your posture correct?
Many people are not aware that stretching can dramatically improve body posture. It is not unusual for people to have improper sitting and standing postures. This is especially true in this day and age when sitting in front of a desk all day is a norm.
When you perform regular, proper stretches, you put your stiff and unused muscles to work again. This is one of the most important reasons why you should stretch your body. Your core muscles (the muscles on your abdomen) gets active again after months and years of slouching. Your lazy back muscles start receiving more blood flow and becomes stronger.
One benefit of these stretching is improved posture. Good posture will naturally lead to better breathing, as well as provide back relief. With good posture, you may experience fewer tension headaches, as well as neck and shoulder strains.
What is your age? How about the age of your body?
It’s mentioned earlier that stretching helps increase flexibility. Greater flexibility, on the other hand, increases the range of motion of your joints. This means the scope of body movement will increase, and you’ll be able to reach certain areas you never thought you could!
A basic example of this is the ability to reach the toes with your fingertips. It can’t usually be done by people who are not physically fit. The range of motion between the toes and fingertips can be improved through a regular yoga stretching program. The effect is improved blood circulation to both limbs.
It is important to avoid overstretching beyond your current range of motion. Overstretching can cause muscle pain, and in severe cases, damaged tendons and ligaments. In fact, stretching a tendon just 4% more than its resting shape can lead to permanent damage!
The healthier approach is to achieve a greater range of stretching gradually. Listen to what your body tells you and choose a yoga program that favors a safe approach over perfect form.
Recovery of pain and injury using the right therapy
The generally accepted belief is that stretching is usually done during warmups. This is true. But do you know that it is equally important to do stretches after exercising?
Post-exercise stretching helps the body enjoy the benefits of exercise more. The heightened blood flow to already loose muscles will help your body to recover faster. In fact, prolonged tiredness and muscle soreness after exercise are typically caused by poor stretching techniques, or not stretching at all.
Mood swings are common – but why you have mood swings?
Feelings of doom and gloom can sometimes arise from bad physical shape and condition. The physiological effects of proper stretching eventually leads to a better mood and outlook in life. Energy levels typically improve, and a greater sense of physical well-being is enjoyed.
Can something so simple as stretching truly impact the quality of life? The answer is yes! The only reason many people don’t do it is because no one taught them the right way to do so.
Do It Right
In this article, we’ve discussed several compelling reasons why you should stretch your body. But just like anything worthwhile and beneficial, stretching needs to be done the right way.
We’ve stressed the importance of safe practice all throughout this post. Yoga is not about achieving perfect alignment or form as soon as possible. It’s also not about showing off inversions and dramatic twists on Instagram. It’s about helping you experience the best of what your body can do, regardless of your current ability or level of physical fitness.
Here at Real Yoga, we provide tailored practice for specific bodies and ailments. We recognize your unique capacity by giving you personalized training that doesn’t push you beyond your limits, yet maximizes your potential.
Redeem a consultation with one of our yoga consultants and avail one trial session with us today!