Exercise is necessary to keep a healthy body and a healthy mind. Many have taken to exercising on a regular basis, at least three days a week, in order to keep up physical health. What some people do not realize, is that it's necessary to stretch before exercising. If stretching is not completed prior to starting an exercise regimen; there may be some serious problems that can occur. Any exercise program that is chosen will always include stretching, and usually a cool down period as well. If the chosen exercise routine does not involve stretching, make sure to include it in the regimen anyways.
It's extremely important to stretch prior to exercising because without stretching, it can damage the muscles. It's necessary to know that the muscles in the body are regularly used, and without stretching, soreness, pain, and strain may occur. The first thing athletes do when before their game or practice, is to stretch. Any athlete will let it be known that stretching is an extremely important part of their routine, either before exercising or playing. Stretching also lengthens the muscles, which can help to improve muscle performance.
Warming up the muscles prior to any workout, helps improve overall performance during a workout. It's best to have a full session of stretching at least one day a week. A stretching session should consist of 45 to 60 minutes of stretching only. Classes such as Yoga and Pilates, generally deal with stretching, and can help with flexibility. By taking classes such as these, even one day a week, can improve one's overall health, as well as prepare the muscles for more strenuous workouts.
There is also a mental benefit to stretching as stretching can calm the mind, and give it a break from regular stress. It's unlikely that one will focus on the stresses of the day, when stretching; leading to a better mental state. Range of motion is also greatly improved by stretching before and after exercising. One may realize that once stretching is regularly incorporated into an exercise, that they are able to do certain moves, which seemed impossible before. Stretching can also make the difference between completing a workout or stopping short, due to a crippling pain or the inability to finish.
For those who are looking to lose weight through exercise, it's expected that workouts will be a minimum of 3 to 5 days or more per week. When doing this much exercising, cardiovascular, or strength training, the muscles get an extreme workout. Those who choose not to stretch before or after each workout will most likely end up sore, causing them to neglect a day or more of exercise. It's understandable when starting an exercise routine; that soreness will occur, but if it's happening every day, it's due to lack of stretching.
Those truly looking to lose weight, cannot afford to take several days off from exercising, as it will cripple the weight loss progress; slowing it down or stopping it completely. By doing something as simple as stretching, one can prepare the muscles for the upcoming workout, and complete it; leading one to reach their weight loss goals. If stretching is regularly done, prior to, and after an exercise, one who does this, will easily see the benefits that stretching has, and less soreness.
Most people do not even realize that sitting at a computer all day can also strain the muscles. Stretching before having to work at the computer, can greatly help to reduce pain in the neck, back, and shoulders. In the future, make sure to stretch properly before any physical activity or long sitting sessions.