Learn Why Regular Flexibility Exercises Are Crucial
When most Americans think about getting in shape, they picture themselves running a marathon or doing one-armed pull-ups. Rarely do they imagine themselves sitting in the splits, but flexibility exercises are important.
According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as well as sports medicine professionals, a healthy exercise prescription should consist of three components: cardiovascular training, strength training, and flexibility exercises.
Flexibility exercises might not be as glamorous as other forms of exercise, but they should not be forgotten in the quest for fitness because the benefits of regular flexibility exercises are many.
Here are some of the top benefits of regular flexibility exercises …
Whether you’re an athlete or an average Joe, being flexible will improve your performance in all physical areas. Flexibility exercises increase your range of motion and build muscles around the joints to support movement. In addition, flexibility helps to balance muscle groups. A larger range of motion means you’ll be able to create more force, so an athlete may notice more power after performing flexibility exercises regularly.
Reduced Risk of Injury
When muscles are stiff, they do not adapt easily to activity. This can cause muscles to pull and tear while under increased stress. A larger range of motion reduces the risk of muscle-strain injuries because muscles are able to stretch farther when loose. Muscle tightness can also lead to injuries to the bones and joints, such as lower back problems, pelvic tilt problems, pronation issues, poor posture, and shoulder injuries.
Improved Production of Synovial Fluid
Synovial fluid is a lubricating fluid found within the joints. Flexibility exercises increase the production of this fluid and allow for more nutrients to be transported to the cartilage of the joints. This, in turn, leads to a greater range of motion and a reduction in joint degeneration over time.
Flexibility exercises improve circulation by increasing blood flow to the muscles. This not only helps essential nutrients reach the tissues and nourish the muscles, but it also helps remove waste byproducts and makes way for oxygen to reach the muscles. In addition, improved circulation can increase energy levels and lead to faster post-workout recovery time.
Alleviates and Prevents Lower Back Pain
Tight muscles can cause problems in other parts of the body. For example, when hip flexor muscles are tight, the pelvis may begin to tilt down toward the front of the body, causing a sway in the lower back. This sway forces lower back muscles to constrict, and this can cause pain over time. In addition, tightness in the legs or shoulders can alter posture and put more pressure on lower back muscles. By keeping muscles loose, posture is improved and lower back stress is alleviated.
Increased Enjoyment of Physical Activity
When physical activity becomes painful, it is difficult to enjoy, but a flexible, injury-free body can make physical activities fun! For example, a wider range of motion can lead to more success in sports and physical games, and the absence of pain makes it easier to enjoy physical exertion over extended periods of time. In addition, flexibility exercises help to relax both the body and the mind, enabling you to handle stress more effectively and be ready for whatever life throws your way.