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Stretching Basics – Ep 29 – Brides Made Fit

by admin on March 26, 2005

Happy New Year to all! Not only does January 1st bring a new year, it is accompanied by the urge for people to get in shape. But jumping in too quickly into a fitness program that you haven’t done in ages may do more harm than good. Starting out slow is a guaranteed way to help you pick up the pace through the next few months. A good way to ease into your fitness program is to learn how to warm up properly and stretch.

There are several different ways of stretching reserved for different activities and movements. One of which is static stretching. Static stretching is most common where you hold a position for a period of time to relax and elongate the muscles. The reason this is good for the muscles is because it helps keeps muscle fibers elastic and keeps the blood flowing to prevent tears, strains and injuries.

It’s important to note that before you perform this type of stretch, you must warm up. Stretching stiff, cold muscles is like trying to stretch a rubber band that was left in the refrigerator — it snaps. Ouch! If you are doing cardiovascular exercise, walk at a brisk pace for five minutes and then stretch before getting back on the treadmill for your run. If you’re wanting to stretch a muscle that has been stiff from weight-lifting, always stretch it AFTER your workout. Studies show stretching before weight-lifting may inhibit muscle contraction performance because the muscle has been elongated. Make sense?

To see some good stretches to incorporate into your routine, check out this weeks podcast. The notes below will also help you follow along.

Seated Hamstring (Leg) Stretch:
Sit with one leg extending in front on you and the other leg tucked close to your torso. Lean your chest forward while keeping your leg straight. You should feel the stretch behind your straight leg. Hold for 20 to 30 seconds and repeat on other leg.

Gluteal and Piriformis (Butt) Stretch:
While seated, place your left foot flat on the ground. Take your right leg and bend it so the side of its ankle rests on your left …

Duration : 0:10:0

Leg Stretches

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