Mdrive

Free Shipping in the US. 60 Day Satisfaction Guarantee.

Why Is Stretching So Important?

Why Is Stretching So Important?

March 19, 2021

 Table Of Contents

What Does Stretching Do?

Have you ever stopped to wonder why you stretch? Usually if asked we say we stretch to make sure our muscles don’t get tight. This isn’t wrong but it goes a bit further.  If we just accept muscles shouldn’t be too tight then there is no real sense of urgency to solidify a good flexibility routine. In this article we will help you understand why flexibility is necessary to your body and how to properly go about stretching.

man stretching

Types of Stretches

First, there are a lot of different ways to stretch. You can do moving stretches (dynamic), self-massage type stretches (SMR), holding stretches (static), and more.  A good general rule of thumb is you want to do your dynamic (or moving) stretches before your workout, and your static (holding) stretching after.  You can use the SMR (self-massage) before and after. There are exceptions to this rule if you are static stretching an over-active muscle, but let’s understand the why a bit more and then revisit this rule of thumb.  

Stretching Is Backed By Medicine

According to the National Academy of Sports Medicine, flexibility is simply described as the ability to move a joint through its complete range of motion. The range of motion of a joint is dictated by the extensibility of the soft tissues surrounding it. Having poor flexibility leads to poor and altered joint motions, and altered joint motions always lead to an injury somewhere down the line. This is why it’s important to include stretching as part of a well-balanced lifestyle.

Our bodies have a series of overactive and underactive muscles that we acquire throughout our lives. The muscles become over active and underactive because of things like modern day shoes, chairs, bags, injuries, and more. The issue with most stretching or flexibility routines are that they do not address the specifics of the individual, or bio individuality as we like to call it.

Fitness Professionals Help With Stretching

The best way to understand your body’s imbalances is to have a fitness professional give you a movement screening or if you would rather, you can do a basic self-assessment. This is a critical first step so don’t skip it! 

trainer and client assessment

It's like the foundational survey of a house. Before you can build a solid and safe home built for longevity, you would be wise to make sure the foundation of your lot is conditioned enough to handle the build. The assessment is a survey of the land to determine what needs to be done to get it into building shape. If you skip this step and your foundation was weak, you will most certainly see some stress cracks in your walls, and no one can tell you how bad the cracks might be. The point being that you have to know your imbalances before you can fix them, and move on safely. Stand with normal posture in front of a mirror.

Perform 5 squats keeping an eye on your knees and ankles. Next, turn to the side and perform 5 more squats keeping an eye on your hips.  If your feet flatten, knees fall into the midline of your body, or your back arches see table 1. If your shoulders shrug up, you get a hunch back, or you can’t keep your chest up see table 2. If you see all of the above happening consider all of the tables for your flexibility routine. We would recommend that you stop your normal workout routine until you can stop these movement patterns.  


Pre-Workout: Roll Out Dynamic: Post Workout: Static
Calf 45 Seconds X-Stance Hinges: 5 each Seiza: 45 Seconds

 

Pre-Workout: Roll Out Dynamic: Post Workout: Static
Traps 45 Seconds Shoulder Openers with chin waves: 10 total Neck Stretch: 45 Seconds


Assessing your Flexibility

Keep in mind that this is a general self-assessment only analyzing your lower body one way, and will always be more accurate if a fitness professional does an assessment for you. When you are dealing with tight muscles (short) you will almost always have muscles that are loose (long), the name of the game in a nutshell is to lengthen(relax) the short, and shorten(strengthen) the long. Yes, Strengthening is part of “stretching.” Having balanced muscles length and tension helps aid to proper joint motion and human movement. With this said add your flexibility routine in daily. If you are adding this to your workout do the roll out and dynamic stretch before your start your normal routine, and add the static stretch to your cool down. You will want to re asses yourself every 2 weeks to see if your squat has changed and is more comfortable. If you need help with your movement assessment and want a custom flexibility routine set up for you, please contact Lifestyle Athlete.

The Lifestyle Athlete Team
-Mdrive Nutrition Coaches

"Train like an athlete, heal like a hippie, always trust your gut"

Lifestyle Athlete





Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in The Driven by Mdrive

fruits and vegetables on a tray
Why Men Need To Eat More Servings of Fruits and Vegetables

October 26, 2021

Most men—especially those embarking on a health-conscious journey—know that it’s important to eat fruits and vegetables every day. Still, on its own, this doesn't really tell a guy much. 

Some questions need to be answered. How many servings of vegetables and fruit per day is enough? For that matter, what actually counts as a serving?

Read More

turmeric
What Are The Benefits Of Turmeric?

October 18, 2021

Turmeric is a spice that is obtained from the roots of Curcuma longa, a plant somewhat related to ginger. The roots are minced down to form a yellow powder. For culinary purposes, the spice, which tastes warm and bitter, is used in curries, scrambled eggs, soups, and as a natural food coloring.

Turmeric has been used for both culinary and medicinal purposes for a long time in India and Southeast Asia. It's also been used as a dye. It's considered possibly one of the most valuable medicinal plants in the world. Learn why!

Read More

caffeinated cup of coffee
What Are Nootropics and How Do They Work?

October 13, 2021

According to the thousands of men that took our Mdrive quiz, 57% were looking for increased energy when researching supplements. It’s no secret–we’re tired. If it's not the climb to your next promotion, it's finding enough hours in the day for family and self-care. Life makes high demands—and a little extra energy from supplements or boosters can go a long way.

Nootropics are a popular solution when feeling sluggish due to their natural approach to boost the body's energy. Many people today are turning to nootropics to enhance focus and to stay energized throughout the day. But just what are nootropics? Where do nootropics come from—and are they healthy? Let's take a closer look.

Read More