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Stretching Will Prevent Injury Before Exercise

Feb 29, 2008
You don't want to start stretching until you have been loosened up with some low intensity activity, such as light aerobics or some brisk walking.

As we get older we will naturally start to lose our flexibility and increase the chances of injury, whether it is exercise or normal physical activity. Stretching will increase your flexibility and help prevent injury, so it's a good idea to make it part of your lifestyle, especially if you have been inactive.

Be sure to always begin slowly and find how far you can gently stretch your muscles and tendons without any kind of discomfort or pain. When done properly, it will actually feel good. Completely stretch the muscles by holding at the end of the stretch for about ten to twenty seconds.

* Begin by slowly rolling your shoulders and neck. Now swing both arms separately and gently in a windmill type motion which will bring your arm past your hip each time to make the full large circle. Do it both forward and backwards. Then put your arms straight out from your sides and rotate your arms in a tight softball size circular motion.

* With both hands on your hips while standing straight, slowly bend to the left and right without bending forward, keeping your shoulderblades even with your buttocks while your leaning. Hold each bend for 5 to 15 seconds.

* You perform this one the same as the last with hands on hips, only you are now going to rotate your upper body in a full rounding type motion including a downward motion toward your knees. Slow and easy works best.

* Stand with a straight posture and lift your arms above your head. Raise yourself up onto the tips of your toes and stretch it. Try to hold it in the up position for a period then lower yourself down and repeat.

* While standing erect and hands on hips, slowly go down and touch your toes. Hold, or make a small up and down like pumping motion toward your toes. Then go back up, touch your hips and raise arms over your head, then bring them back down to hips and toes in a fluid type manner and always hold or pump gently.

* Find a solid hard surface where you can comfortably place one of your palms on surface at waist level. With one of your hips facing the surface, place a straight arm palm down on top. Now take your other arm and lift up and over your head while raising up onto your toes leaning towards the other arm and surface top. While doing this you should be in a balarina like stance or C shape. Do enough of these and you can reduce love handles and build your calves. Do both sides and repeat.

When you are finished stretching out your tight muscles and tendons you are ready to begin your fat reducing exercises or muscle building program safely. Be patient but persistent and you will reap great benefits, so don't try and do to much at once.

Apply these stretching routines before all your activities, including normal physical activity. You should be feeling more nimble and healthy especially if you've finally made the decision to include exercise or physical activity routines into your daily life. Quality exercise combined with a quality diet program will give you the best chance possible to get to the proper weight and fit look you've been seeking.
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