Stretching is one of the movements that you might enjoy doing at the gym. But why does stretching feel good? Stretching relaxes your mind, makes your muscles flex from being stiff. There are quite a lot of benefits of doing stretch exercises.
You can do stretching for headaches to feel better. And you can also do stretching for swimming or any other main workout to prepare your muscles. As such, there are so many reasons for doing stretches. The following paragraphs give you various stretch exercises that you can do for different reasons.
Stretching Exercises For Weight Lifting
Before doing the main exercises, you must make sure that you get your body ready. Stretching is the best way of preparing your body for the major workouts. There are different stretch exercises that you can do after doing a warm-up.
Doing stretch exercises makes your muscles more flexible so that you can do the main exercises with your muscles well prepared. Besides that, the stretch exercises are good for improving blood circulation. After doing the main exercise, it is also good to stretch your muscles. Stretching after doing the main exercise is good for improving your muscle health. It lowers muscle fitness and soreness after doing the main exercises.
For weightlifting, you can do the following stretch exercises
- Wall extensions
- Hip bridge
- Hip and groin opener
Stretching Exercises After Hip Replacement
After doing a hip replacement, you can do some stretch exercises that won’t disturb your healing procedure. Instead, the stretch exercises will help you to heal your hips smoothly. However, you must be choosy when doing the stretch exercises after hip replacement. You can ask the stretching therapist to assist you with the exercises that are perfect for your particular condition.
Seated Hamstring Stretch
The seated hamstring stretch is one of the exercises that you can do after hip replacement. It is good for stretching your hamstring muscles. You can follow the instructions below;
- Start by sitting on the edge of a chair and make sure that your feet are planted on the floor.
- 2. Extend your operated leg until it is fully straight with the heel on the floor and the toes pointing upwards.
- Lean forward with your upper body keeping your back straight.
- Keep on stretching your hip muscles.
This is another exercise that is safe to do after having a hip replacement. It is good for soothing your painful hip muscles. Interestingly, you can do the exercise while seated or standing. To do the side stretch exercise, follow the following steps;
- Stand upright with your feet at shoulder width apart.
- Let your one hand balance on your waist and then stretch the other hand above your head.
- Lean away from the side with raised hands or the operated side. Breathe deeply as you stretch yourself.
Hip Flexor Stretch
The hip flexor stretch is another easy exercise that you can do after hip replacement. It stretches your hip muscles particularly the flexors.
- Lie on a bed on your back and let the operated leg hang at the end of a bed.
- Then bend the other non-operated leg towards the chest. You can use a towel or hands to bend your leg.
- Then return the leg to hang at the end of the bed and then exercise the other leg.
- Keep alternating the legs.
Stretching Exercises Upper Back Pain
Having upper back pain might make it difficult to have stability. Your posture might be affected. Doing stretch exercises can relieve back pain and loosen some stiff muscles. In addition to that, stretch exercises are therapeutic and they make you relax better. Below are some of the exercises that you can do;
Cat Cow Stretch
The cat-cow stretch exercise is good for flexing your tense muscles. It takes the upper back muscles such as the thoracic spine to work properly. It loosens the upper back muscles that are stiff and rigid so that you can do your day to day activities. Doing cat-cow stretch exercises is easy.
- Start on your fours with palms planted on the floor under your shoulders. Then kneel so that your knees are under your hips.
- Inhale and form an arch with your back as you press the chest towards the floor. Lift your head up towards the roof.
- Then do the cat’s pose by pushing your middle back upwards to form a ‘C’ curve. Your head must be hanging towards the floor.
- Repeat and keep on alternating between a cow and cat movement.
Child’s Pose With Rotation
The child’s pose is another exercise that you can do to relieve back pain. It is good for stretching your upper back muscles. Besides working your upper back muscles, it also exercises the hips to a lesser extent.
If you want to perform this exercise;
- Kneel on the floor and keep your knees away with your toes close to each other.
- Lower your body to the floor with your arm spread in front of you. Then cross the other arm below the one stretched in front of you.
- Pause for 5 seconds in that position and alternate the position of your arms.
- Repeat the moves and keep on alternating the arms.
Does Stretching Help Lower Back Pain
The stretching exercises are helpful when you have lower back pain. They help in various ways. By stretching, you soothe your painful muscles. In addition to that, stretching helps in blood circulation, therefore that improves your health. The stretch exercises flex the stiff muscles. As such, it is helpful in relieving lower back pain.
Mid Back Stretching Exercises
Having back pain makes you feel uncomfortable and it also affects your posture negatively. There are different exercises that you can do to relieve and soothe the pain.
This stretch exercise loosens stiff muscles. In addition to that, it improves blood circulation. The stretch exercise is good at strengthening the spine muscles. This is not a complicated exercise and you don’t need any additional gym equipment to do the exercise.
- Start by lying on the floor on your stomach and keep your legs fully stretched on the floor.
- Then plant your palms under your shoulders.
- Press your hips and pelvis against the floor and lift your chest and head up.
- Continue lifting your head up until your arms fully stretched. Pause in that position for 30 seconds
The supported bridge is good for targeting your lower back muscles. It relieves the pain and loosens stiff muscles. Using a cushion to support your back makes it easy to do the exercise. However, it is effective in stretching your back muscles. This is how you do the exercise;
- Lie on the floor facing the ceiling with bent knees and feet planted on the floor.
- Lift your butt and hips to place the cushion underneath them. Balance yourself with your feet, shoulders, and the cushion as you try to form a straight bridge.
- Stay in that position for a minute or at least 3 seconds.
- You can repeat for 5 times, resting for a minute between the sets.
Besides these two exercises other stretch exercises that you can do to help lower back pain include cat-cow pose, latissimus dorsi stretch, passive backbend, thread the needle, and many others.
Pre And Post Workout Stretching
You may not have the same feelings when doing the stretch exercises before and after the workout. Before the workout, you do the stretch exercises that prepare your body for the main workout. Then after doing the main workout, you will need some stretching exercises that can help you relax your muscles after the major workout.
Before exercising you may do the stretch exercises that will make you perform better when doing the exercises. Some stretch exercises that you may do include the full leg stretch, quad stretch, runner’s lunge, bridge, and many others. You can do intense stretches such as ballistic stretches. Some ballistic stretches that you can do include heel to rear jog, lunge walk with a twist, carioca, and more.
After doing the main workout, you can do static stretching. Static stretching involves exercises where you pose for a while in the same position. Such exercises help you to focus on particular muscles. Some exercises that you may do post the main workout include piriformis stretch, standing calf stretch, overhead tricep stretch, and many others.
Stretching Exercises For Calf Muscle Strain
While nursing your calf muscle strain, there are various stretch exercises that you can do to relieve yourself. The stretch exercises can also help your muscles recover faster. The stretch exercises for calf muscle strain include heel cord stretch, calf stretch, toe dip, and many others.
Does Stretching Make You Taller
Stretching is good for keeping your muscles in good condition. No matter how much you may do the stretch exercises, it will never change your height. You will remain in the same height; you will not get taller or shorter.
Why does stretching feel good? Stretching feels good due to various reasons. For instance, if you are suffering from different body pains, your stretching physical therapy may include stretch exercises that will relieve the pain.
The above paragraphs give you different stretch exercises for various reasons. There are exercises that you can do before doing the main workout and stretch exercises that you can do after doing the workout. As such, stretch exercise always makes you feel good.
Have you done the stretching exercises and felt bad afterward? Share your experience regarding the stretch exercises that you have done.