180319 Five Facts About Flexibility and Stretching
1. Maintaining your Range of Motion (ROM) is important, as it appears to reduce the potential for injury. An adequate ROM will enhance your ability to do certain physical and sports related activities.
2. The best time to stretch is immediately after the warm up as the blood flow and temperature in the muscles is highest. This makes them more elastic and in a better condition to be stretched. However, this is NOT the time to stretch if you are about to participate in a power sport, i.e. sprints, pole vaults, throwing movements or weight lifting. Stretching before these types of activities reduces the power output by as much as 8%!
3. One of the key facts to maximizing flexibility is the amount of repetitions performed each time. The magic number seems to be no less than two up to about six per position. Hold to the point of mild discomfort for 10-30 seconds. The time has not been universally agreed upon.
4. The order in which you exercise matters. Stretch the major muscles first. From these move to the specific muscles that will be involved in the upcoming activity.
5. Isolate the muscles to help eliminate any compromises in your efforts. By concentrating on specific muscles, you also lessen your risk of injury.