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Ask Your Personal Trainer: How Often Should I Stretch?

Stretching is highly underrated. The typical five minute stretch before or after a workout, in the long run, has no lasting benefits. The importance of a quality stretching program is just as important as strength training. As we age, our muscles shorten and our joints compress. This causes stiffness, soreness and reduced range of motion. Healthy flexibility can be maintained with a proper stretching program.

There are a few simple guidelines to follow. Never stretch a cold muscle. Hence, avoid stretching first thing in the morning. I recommend stretching at night. It is relaxing and will lower cortisol which will help you sleep better. Avoid bouncing, jerking movements. Go into and out of a stretch slowly and controlled. Hold each stretch for 30 to 60 seconds, or longer. Repeat each stretch two to three times, taking the stretch slightly farther each time. Focus on tight, problematic joints first. A flexibility session should last 30 to 60 minutes; at least five times a week.

I stretch every night before bed. I make it part of my “winding down” time. I stretch for an hour while watching Netflix or may listen to a guided meditation.

With consistency, a flexibility routine done correctly can improve your range of motion and reduce stiffness. Do It!

Sharon Powell

Female Fitness Trainer of Tucson

2 Responses to 'Ask Your Personal Trainer: How Often Should I Stretch?'

  1. An intriguing discussion is worth comment. I believe that you ought to write more on this subject, it might not
    be a taboo matter but generally people don’t discuss such subjects. To the next! Many thanks!!

    • admin says:

      Thank you for your feedback! We often focus on the strength training, weight loss or bodybuilding aspects of fitness and neglect the recovery period. Yes, future blogs on topics of sleep, rest and recovery to come.
      Sharon Powell

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