The need to be flexible
We all need to be flexible . . . especially as we age. So many of us are stuck working at jobs where we have to keep our bodies in a certain position for hours at a time – working at a desk job, lifting packages all day, driving for a living, standing on your feet all day, bent over a computer or climbing ladders. Because of these types of jobs, many of our functional muscles and joints become stiff and inflexible.
They get weak and cause you to develop poor posture with aching back, slouching shoulders and weak legs. We have to learn how to activate these parts of our bodies again.
If we don’t do anything about it, we could end up needing chiropractic adjustments. Or even worse, we could develop so much pain and discomfort from normal movements that we have to seek medical attention. You can’t even touch your toes because your muscles and joints are too stiff and inflexible.
This happened to me. Because of my job, my hamstring muscles at the back of my thighs, became so tight from being in a sitting position for hours at a time that it affected the way I walked. Even standing or holding my body upright was awkward. It took a lot of effort to get my body back to normal. It’s also taking consistent daily work to maintain my flexibility.
If you are a starting on your workout journey or are an experience exerciser, then you must know the benefits of staying flexible. Neglecting to stretch correctly will affect your every day performance.
If you have ever seen a ballerina walking you would notice how graceful they seem to flow. We may not be like them but we can practice similar stretching movements as they do. Part of my coaching is to get people to do a proper stretch at least three times per week.
Here are some main benefits of doing a daily stretch program . . .
Stretching will keep your muscles flexible, strong, and healthy, and helps to maintain full range of motion(ROM) throughout any movements. Don’t be like me and end up with muscles that got too short and tight. When my activity called for the use of these muscles, I was not able to do proper ROM.
When I changed up my exercise routine and started using my muscles differently, they were weak and unable to extend all the way. Even now I still suffer from the lingering effects of poor flexibility.
Stretching regularly will keep muscles long and lean, and when more effort or force is needed, you won’t have to suffer undue pain or discomfort in the muscles.
If you are prone to having poor balance then healthy and flexible muscles will improve you balance and help you avoid falls.
If you play any type of sports such as tennis, basketball, baseball or recreational swimming, martial arts or running, stretching helps. By doing a regular flexibility program you will improve your athletic performance and help to avoid injuries.
Stretching can help to improve your circulation and avoid certain conditions like pre-diabetes, poor venal return, restless leg syndrome.
If you are recovering from certain sports or performance injuries such as pulled hamstring or Achilles heel tendon problems, then you must do a regular stretching program to restore these parts back to normal.
There are anywhere from 200 to 400 joints in our bodies . . . depending on our age. We can’t exercise them all but by practicing regular ROM(range of motion) movements we can have a positive impact on most of them.
To help you to improve your flexibility I am recommending a product I use. It’s called Hyperbolic stretching. It will restore flexibility in as little as 4 weeks. I mentioned it in my last post and I am encouraged because it is helping me with my full range of motion. Check it out here below.