Flexibility training is a vital aspect to prevent injuries, stay healthy, agile, and mobile. Flexibility exercise consists of only stretching exercises. Stretching exercises for flexibility are of two types, namely dynamic and static. Dynamic stretching is done before the workout to prepare the muscles to exercise. Static stretching is done after the training to cool down the body, and this is the most essential proven session to prevent injury due to muscle strain. Stretching exercises won't probably shower you with the same rush that a HIIT workout will provide and will not help you to get lean. But it is just not right to put your body at the risk of injury and pain by skipping stretches for flexibility. Most of the sportspeople mainly do flexibility exercise to stay injury-free. And one must essentially follow stretches for flexibility only after a proper warm-up. The warm-up may be very mild, like slow running or brisk walking for a few minutes.
Types of Flexibility Exercises
The most popular exercises to increase flexibility that are just important for a well-rounded fitness regime are:
- Side Lunges
- Standing Quad Stretch
- Seat Side Straddle
- Knees to Chest
- Forward Lunges
- Cross- Over
- Seat Straddle Lotus
- Seat Stretch
This flexibility exercise is done by standing with the legs wide apart and bending one knee while leaning to the same side. The other leg is placed straight, and this position is held for five seconds. It is repeated three to six times by alternating between the legs.
Standing Quad Stretch:
This flexibility exercise is done with the support of a wall or chair. By holding onto it, the foot is pulled behind to the buttocks. Take care that the knees are close to each other. This posture is held for five seconds, and it is repeated five times on both legs.
Seat Side Straddle:
This flexibility exercise is done by spreading the legs in a sitting position on the floor. The hands are placed on one ankle and the chin facing the knee. One must take care to keep the legs straight, and this position must be held for five seconds and then repeated to the other leg. It is performed at least five times.
Knees to Chest:
This flexibility exercise is performed by lying on the back with the knees bent. Hold the knees with the hands and then bring them towards the chest by making a rocking movement. Hold this position for five seconds and then repeat six times.
This flexibility exercise is done by kneeling on one leg and then placing the other leg in a forward position at right angles. By placing the back straight, one should do the stretch properly as one must feel it in the groin. One must hold this pose for five seconds, and one must do it on both legs at least five times. Cross-over: This flexibility exercise is done by keeping the legs crossed with the feet together and the legs straight. The toes must be touched by bending down, taking care not to bend the knees. Stay in this position for five seconds and keep alternating between the legs at least five times.
Seat Straddle Lotus:
This flexibility exercise is done by sitting on the floor by keeping the soles of the feet together and dropping the knees to the floor. The forearms are placed on the inside of the knees by pushing it towards the ground. One must take care to lean forward from the hips, and one must hold this posture for a minimum of five seconds. One should repeat it at least five times.
This flexibility exercise is performed by sitting on the floor with the feet together. The hands are then placed on the ankles. The chin is placed towards the knees, and the position is held for five seconds. It is repeated three to six times.
Benefits of Performing Flexibility Exercises
By practicing flexibility exercise every day as a routine, one is sure to reap all its benefits. They are:
- Flexibility training will help the body experience less pain and aches.
- Stretching exercises for flexibility will improve the body's posture and balance tremendously by increasing muscular flexibility.
- Body flexibility exercises create a positive state of mind.
- Flexibility exercise is beneficial in strength training and weight loss workout and allows an individual to become more fit.
- Flexibility workouts tend to increase the physical performance of a person to greater extents.
- Flexibility exercise helps the body to take more physical stress.
- Flexibility exercises for beginners get rid of all muscle imbalances.
- Flexibility exercise reduces the chance of getting injured during workouts and all physical activities.
- Body flexibility exercises make the muscles tension-free, thereby providing an overall good and fit body.
- Flexibility workouts increase the range of motion and make it easy for a person to perform all the physical activities with less effort.
- Flexibility exercises for beginners relax the mind and make the individual feel the mood lift.
Guidelines to Perform Flexibility Stretches
The tips to make stretching safe are:
- Always start with warming up and then proceed to stretch exercises.
- Focus on having an equal amount of flexibility on both sides of the body.
- Concentrate on all the body's major muscle groups such as calves, thighs, back, shoulder, neck, and hips.
- Do not bounce while stretching, as it will strain the muscles.
- Perform the stretches and feel the tension instead of exerting and feeling the pain.
- Hold the stretches at least for thirty seconds and try to breathe naturally all through the stretching session to increase flexibility.
Stretching exercises will help prevent the risk of injuries, and therefore, it is essential not to skip them. In the fast-moving world with all queued up schedules and chores, one tends to shy away from stretching to maximize their workout time naturally. So, it is suggested to incorporate a few of the renowned stretching exercises that we discussed above to ultimately make one's workout efficient and safe in all circumstances.
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