Dynamic and Static Stretching for Cool Down and Warm Up Phase in Training

When doing stretching, it’s important to know a little bit about physiology of musculo-skeletal system. Movable joints of the musculo-skeletal system have a particular amplitude of movements that can be performed out. This range of move in a joint is called “ROM” (range of motion).

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How often can you stretch?

Range of motion in the wrist is determined by many factors such as the structure of connective tissues, the activity of the individual, gender, and every joint has its own specific range of motion, and the type of movement you perform. The ability of a joint to make bigger ROM is called flexibility.

Since the flexibility is a very important aspect of man’s musculoskeletal the system, as in athletes, and the ordinary population, stretching should be part of every training routine. What is important, and many do not know, is how and what type of stretching exercises to do with respect to the rest of the training. Stretching can be a static and dynamic, and it is not connected with each other, therefore it is necessary to develop abilities in both components.

At least these four stretches – in your routine.

  1. Achilles’s tendon stretch – it stretches the calf muscle (the lower leg muscle) and the tendons that attach the calf muscle to bone and the back of your ankle. It will also, quickly accelerate your heart and breathing rate.
  2. Touching your toes – it stretches the lower back muscles and it stretches the hamstring muscle – the heavy muscle in the back part of the thigh.
  3. Squats to a standing position – it stretches the lower back muscles and the quads – the heavy muscle in front of the thigh.

What are the different types of stretching?

Such stretching is slow and steadily, so it retains one range of motion, and the muscles are relaxed and elongated. Static retention in the stretched position significantly improves flexibility and increases range of joint motion which reduces the risk of injury.

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While using the correct technique there is no risk of injury when stretching itself, since movement is slow and controlled. Static stretching is performed at least for 10-20 seconds, and even more to have any effect.

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It reduces the temperature of the muscles and connective tissues and it is best to apply as part of the “cool down” phase in training, when the body preparing for the recovery.

Dynamic vs Static stretching

This type of stretching has more functional purpose, and is performed by specific workouts to prepare the body for the upcoming activity. The goal is to prepare for the warm up phase in training that you need to be able to perform certain activities. Also warming up is essential to be able to accomplish level of dynamic flexibility the training requires.

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Dynamic stretching raises the temperature of the muscles and connective tissues, and coordinates the work of a few joints involved in the stretch. For that dynamic stretching should be part of the warm-up before any sports and physical activity.

Why do we have to stretch?

It is essential to practice proper stretching techniques. Doing so will allow you to avoid any unnecessary injury. So, before training it is necessary to run the dynamic stretching exercises using specific movements which will prepare the body for the activity that follows. After exercise we need to spend out a few minutes to exercise static stretching exercises that increase range of motion and prepare the body for the rest.

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Lack of flexibility means an increased risk of muscles and joint injury. What you need to do is a dynamic warm up, for 7-10 minutes, depending on the person. Tips to proper stretching technique include the following:

  1. High knees.
  2. Butt kickers.
  3. Side shuffles.
  4. Backwards running.
  5. Arm Swing, circles.
  6. Running, sprints.
  7. Push ups.
  8. When done right these exercises stretches the lower back muscles, the thigh, quads and hamstring muscles, and, calf muscle with its’ associated tendons.

Hold each stretch for 20-30 seconds

Do NOT hold a stretch that is in anyway painful. It should feel tight and that tightness should diminish as you hold the stretch. Each stretch should be held for 20-30 seconds and should be repeated at least twice.

Breath! Avoid breathing holding as you stretch as this can raise blood pressure and leave you feeling dizzy.

For optimal results try to stretch every day or at least 3-4 times a week.

Makes sure your body in completely warm before you start. Either do 5-10 mins of light aerobic exercise or do your stretches at the end of a training session.

Stretching to increase flexibility rather than as part of a warm up requires a slightly different approach..