Alongside cardiovascular and strength training, flexibility training is highly important. Flexibility training improves movement, releases muscle tension, and reduces injury risk. It helps to warm up for before stretching. If you don’t have time for a warmup, try stretching after a shower. Stretches can be static or dynamic. When stretching, don’t bounce or hold your breath. Also, remember that stretching shouldn’t hurt. While stretching for 30 minutes a day is ideal, even just five minutes a day is beneficial. Yoga or tai chi classes are a good way to get stretching in.
- A static stretch should begin with a deep breath and the stretch should last 15-30 seconds.
- If you can’t warm up before your stretching, try doing some stretches after a hot shower instead.
- One great way to improve your flexibility is to take either a yoga or a tai chi class.
“Before stretching, take a few minutes to warm up, as stretching cold muscles may increase your chances for injury.”