How often do you take the time to stretch? Many people understand the importance of regular exercise, but many overlook stretching and flexibility training. Stretching is important for the body, especially if a person spends most of the day relatively stationary, by working at a desk, driving long distances or looking down at a cell phone for long periods. Decreases in flexibility can cause pain, stiffness and often times lead to a decreased desire to exercise. By taking the time to stretch regularly, not only will you reduce stiffness, but you will also reduce the possibility of injury and maintain proper range of motion of your joints. The chiropractors at Dirks Chiropractors of Greenville, Washington and Williamston have compiled recommended tips to help you get started on your daily stretching routine.
- Before you begin stretching, it is important to have adequate blood flow to the muscles. Stretching a cold muscle can be just as bad as not stretching at all. Taking about five minutes to jog lightly, bike or power walk before stretching will help your muscles be more elastic and less likely to be strained.
- When stretching, make a conscious effort to breathe fluidly and fully. For some reason, many people almost instinctively hold their breath while stretching. Breathing consistently will help you get the most out of a stretch and help you relax.
- Remember that stretching should not hurt. You should feel a good stretch, but you should not stretch until the point of pain. Once you feel the good stretch you should hold that position for 15 to 20 seconds.
- Don’t not “bounce” while you are in a stretching position, this may actually tear the muscle. Simply hold the stretch in a still position.
- Especially when stretching, consistency is key. It is recommend to stretch two or three times per day. You do not have to stretch your entire body each time. Just pick a couple of problem areas where you may feel built up tension and focus on them.
- Supplement your stretching routine with chiropractic care to help keep body alignment, promote balance, stretch and relieve tense muscles and help ensure proper joint operation. When stretching and chiropractic care are done in tandem, individuals find their results are better than when done alone.
For more personalized stretching tips that can help keep your spin aligned and minimize the stress placed on it, contact the experienced chiropractors at Dirks Chiropractic today. Our chiropractors help patients learn ways to increase flexibility and mobility, and live pain-free. With regular at-home stretching and personalized chiropractic care, patients can see an improvement in lower back pain, mid back pain and neck pain. Give us a call to see how proper back alignment can improve your life.