In every athlete’s routine, stretching is one of the most important things. Therefore, these exercises for flexibility are highly essential and can help athletes avoid any future injuries. By increasing muscle and joint mobility, daily stretching can bring a huge number of benefits, such as:
- Increased balance
- Better athletic performance
- More flexibility
Those who want to improve their flexibility should stretch for about 10 minutes daily.
The Top 5 Stretching Exercises
Here are some of the top stretching exercises recommended by sports medicine therapists. Just include these stretches in your daily routine to enjoy a lot of advantages.
1. Runner’s Lunge
For athletes, lunging is one of the most popular and beneficial stretching exercises. Believe it or not, it can perfectly stretch a wide range of muscle groups in your legs, such as hamstrings and glute muscles to name a few. As these muscles can tighten after sitting for too long in the office, it’s highly important to stretch these out and keep mobility.
How to do Runner’s Lunge:
- Plank position is the first thing to do. During this position, put your hands directly below your shoulders.
- Step your right foot forward to the outer edge of your mat next to your right pinky finger.
- Relax through your hips and back so they can sink toward the ground.
- Now breathe and hold for 30 seconds. Then hurry up to switch sides.
Runner’s Lunge is considered to be a perfect shoulders and arms workout. Do it slowly to prepare your legs and hips for a workout. Just remember that you should never warm up for a workout by holding stretches for a long time.
2. Pigeon Pose
This is one of the best solutions for stretching your legs because it guarantees your leg mobility during a long day of sitting. By stretching glutes and upper leg muscles, this exercise can help you to relax your tensed muscles. Pigeon Pose has several variations, like:
- Classic Pigeon Pose
- Resting Pigeon Pose
- King Pigeon Pose
After the warm-up, this is one of the most desirable stretching exercise. Start with Classic Pigeon Pose, followed by Resting Pigeon Pose, and eventually King Pigeon Pose. Due to these simple variations, you will be able to prepare your body for harder variations. This sequence is the best solution to avoid injury and perform other poses correctly.
The benefits of Pigeon Pose are as follows:
· Increases flexibility
· Relieves backache and stiffness
· Stimulates digestion
· Maintains the stability of the sacroiliac joint
3. Cobra Stretch
Adopted from yoga, cobra stretch is a very popular type of stretching exercise. Believe it or not, cobra stretch is able to curate better spine flexibility. Due to this exercise, you will feel relaxed because it will eliminate back pain as well. It can also bring other pretty impressive health benefits:
· Decreases stiffness of your lower back
· Boosts flexibility
· Elevates mood
· Strengthens the arms and shoulders
· Reduces symptoms of depression
· Improves sleep
· Improves posture
How to do the Cobra Pose:
- Simply lie on your belly and separate your feet and legs to hip-width. Then point your toes and ensure that the tops of your feet are on the floor.
- Bend your elbows and then place your hands on the floor next to your ribs while stacking your wrist and elbow.
- Begin to peel your chest away from the floor as you inhale.
Thus, it can be said that stretching exercises have the ability to lower back pain and also is very beneficial for alleviating it. Cobra Pose has several benefits, not only for the body but also for the mind. Do Cobra every day and see the benefits yourself.
4. Chest Opener Stretch
If you are looking for more arm-based exercises, opt for the Chest Opener Stretch. It will help you to have:
- Flexible arms
- An opened chest
- Limber shoulders
If you spend most of your time in the office, then this stretch is can be very beneficial for you. Sitting at desks all day and working at a computer can stiffen your shoulders. Thus, this is an ideal solution that can help you get rid of strain on your shoulders, chest, or arms.
5. Frog Stretch
The frog stretch is very beneficial stretching exercises. It stretches muscles along the front of your thighs. Most commonly, it is used by dancers, as they need unlimited mobility. However, it is also useful for climbers and other athletes and guarantees hip flexibility.
Including breathing and mindfulness, Frog Pose brings many benefits while promoting relaxation and helping release mental and physical tension.
How to do the Frog Pose:
- Begin on all fours with your hands under your shoulders and your knees beneath your hips.
- Yield your weight forward onto your hands.
- Scoot your knees out to the sides. Make sure you are keeping them in line with your hips. Do everything slowly.
- Keep your knees bent and your ankles behind you, in line with your knees.
- Turn your toes out to the sides.
- Place your palms on the floor while resting on your forearms with your elbows beneath your shoulders.
- To deepen the pose, simply sit back.
- Focus on yourself, try to relax and release tension and breathe deeply.
The frog pose should be held for 1 minute. However, athletes who are experienced can hold it for 3–5 minutes, with practice. The frog pose is one of the best stretching exercises for lower backstretches and can help you strengthen that area properly.
Stretching is an important part of any athlete’s routine. You can progress in this field if you practice daily habits. Remember that lower backstretches and upper back stretches are significantly essential because they will grant you incredible mobility. Now, what are you waiting for? Hurry up to improve your health and increase your mobility!