When Should I Stretch?

Athletic or not, stretching is a very valuable tool in sports medicine. Active people, those with joint problems, or people simply getting older may wonder what the best time and occasion is for stretching, and the answers might surprise you.

Orthopedic_doctorAround Your Workout

Many of us know that stretching before a workout is very important to warm up muscles and increase their flexibility. This tactic will help prevent injuries and give you a better range of motion and comfort when exercising. Although, many people don’t realize that stretching after a workout will help relieve some of the post-workout soreness that can occur, plus improve your flexibility significantly. Stretch before your warm up and after your cool down. Avoid pushing muscles to the point of actual pain and never “bounce” to stretch further.

When Stiffness Strikes

Office dwellers know the pain of sitting far too well — you’ve been chained to your desk all day and can hardly move when your day is done. Use this great sports medicine strategy to limber up throughout the day and improve your mobility. Stand in front of your desk and reach for the sky, stretching as tall as you can while maintaining balance. Gently bend forward and stretch your arms towards your feet. Don’t forget to stretch to each side too, and get your joint fluid moving in your vertebrae and other vulnerable joints.

Night and Day

First thing in the morning, a nice gentle stretch can start waking and warming up muscles that have been laying dormant all night. Before you go to bed, stretching not only helps lengthen your muscles, but will also help you achieve a better night’s rest.

Stretching is a great way to achieve better flexibility, muscle performance, comfort, and relaxation. Talk to your orthopedic specialist for a stretch routine that is right for you.

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