Brush up on Stretching
There are a variety of flexibility stretches one can perform within a workout session and many of us are guilty in simply following others in stretches without knowing which one will benefit the most for our own body type and fitness level.
Four different flexibility stretches that are most common.
1. SMR (Self-Myofascial Release)
-helps increase flexibility
-increase range of motion before a workout
-reduce soreness for a faster recovery
*find your tender spot, relax the muscle and hold for 30 seconds
*hold the static pressure, no need to roll quickly
2. Static Stretching
-hold for 30-60 seconds
-recommended to be performed only on muscles identified as overactive
-help to better stabilize and control the center of pressure
Examples: inner hip stretch, ankle (calves) stretch, front neck stretch
3. Active-Isolated Stretching
-hold tension for 1-2 seconds, recommended 5-10 reps
-used as pre-activity warm up
Examples: shoulder stretch, lateral hamstring stretch
4. Dynamic Stretching (not the same as Ballistic where rapid and repetitive movements are present)
-maintain a smooth and controlled speed
-recommended to perform SMR or Static stretching before if experiencing muscle imbalance
Examples: prisoner squat, push-up with rotation, walking kick, handwalks
*These are just few examples of each type, you can find instructional videos and examples on the web
*I am not a physical therapist, please contact your physician before performing any of the stretches if you have an injury or joint instability.
National Academy of Sports Medicine. (2017). NASM Essentials of Personal Fitness Training. Chandler : Jones and Barlett Learning.