The Dos & Don’ts of Stretching

stretching physiotherapy pilates
Everyone knows that stretching helps to increase flexibility, but – did you know that stretching reduces wear and tear on joints, reducing joint pain? We all know we should stretch for what ever reason it may be, so here are some Do’s and Don’t’s to keep in mind during your stretch sessions.

Dos

1. Do hold the stretch for 15 -30seconds (increase your times as your become more able) 2. Do dynamic stretches after your warm up and before your main exercise component. Dynamic stretches are where you are stretching your muscles through movement. You should stretch the muscles you are about to use in your exercise session. 3. Do finish a workout or exercise with stretching, usually static stretches (hold the stretch to point of tension). Use it as part of your cool down. 4. Do think about where you are supposed to be feeling the stretch and make sure you are feeling it in the correct place.

Don’ts

1. Don’t begin your workout or exercise with stretching, always warm up first. I recommend 10minutes of walking. 2. Don’t bounce when holding your stretch. 3. Don’t hold your breath. Take deep fluid breaths while stretching. 4. Don’t stretch into pain. Stop when you feel tension and don’t push beyond. 5. Don’t over stretch when pregnant, as your ligaments are more lax due to a hormone called relaxin. This hormone prepares your body for giving birth, however you are more prone to injury if you over stretch.    
Hope that helps and clears up a few queries. If you have any other questions, or would like some help with your stretching program, please do not hesitate to contact us!