A common mistake most people do when exercising is they omit to stretch before and after they work out, saying they'll warm up when they start exercising, or that they don't really need it afterwards. But properly stretching pre- and post-workout is beneficial to the body and actually helps in keeping fitness on track.
Stretching is beneficial pre-workout by balancing the mechanics of the body. It prevents injuries by warming up the muscles, connective tissues and joints for them to be able to perform a greater range of motions. It raises the body temperature and heart rate to prepare the body for the strenuous activity ahead. Not only will the body become more flexible, the performance also improves over time.
As for post-workout, stretching is beneficial because it helps cool down the body by loosening up tight muscles and slowing the heart rate. It is a good idea to incorporate a slow walk post-workout as a way to cool down and be sure to perform static stretches for 5-10 minutes on both sides of the body.
It may be time consuming to include stretching pre- and post-workout, but it will be worth it. Following a regular stretching routine will really help with performance and recovery.
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