Stretching is something you KNOW you should be doing, but somehow, you never feel like it's quite worth the time and effort. Hence this post promoting the Magic Fitness Campaign for the endless health and happiness benefits of #GetToKnowYourToes
Stretching has become a huge part of my life as I find it helps to create stillness in my life, which as a Personal Trainer, is obviously very active and busy!
Many of our Magic Fitness clients have found many previously unknown benefits to stretching so that now it is something they actually enjoy as part of a daily ritual - they actually look forward to it!
So join the stretch revolution and send Magic Fitness your photos of you getting to know your toes - Post them to our Facebook page today!
THE REASONS FOR STRETCHING THAT YOU MOST LIKELY ALREADY KNOW (but don't motivate you)
1) To Prepare Your Body for a Workout
Just like using dental floss, everyone knows they SHOULD do this, but many people skip it. It is VITAL to stretch your muscles thoroughly before any workout to ensure they are warmed up and ready for action. I can not tell you how many injuries are caused by inadequate (or non-existent) stretching. However do not stretch cold muscles! Do a bit of running on the spot or some jumping jacks before stretching your muscles out.
2) Reduce Muscle Soreness
Yes stretching down is also a great way to ease the 'after-burn' post workout so that you can have the benefit of exercising a little every day. There's nothing worse than post-workout burn so bad that you feel like you are walking like a penguin!
3) Increased Flexibility
Flexibility training will help to improve and maintain muscular extensibility equilibrium. Along with creating a balance in length of your muscle, the simple act of stretching can compliment gains made by resistance training. Both resistance training and stretching will cause slight tearing in muscle tissue which heals quickly and causes muscular growth and improvements in strength, as well as, help protect against injury.
THE REASONS THAT COULD MOTIVATE YOU TO STRETCH MORE!
4) Good for the Soul
Stretching isn't just good for the body, but also the mind and soul. Yoga and Pilates postures performed with deep breathing help to create stillness and calm, and in a world where you are virtually never 'switched off' unless you are asleep, the long-lasting benefits of 5 minutes of calm are well worth the effort.
5) You Could Look Like Miranda Kerr (NOTE: Please don't take literally!)
Many models and actresses such as the stunning Victoria Secret model Miranda Kerr invest much of their workout time in to Yoga or Pilates thanks to it lengthening the muscle fascia to create a long and lean body rather than big and bulky. Ok so looking like the gorgeous Miranda might be slightly out of reach, but getting OUR best lean body is definitely a goal we can achieve with stretching.
6) Promotes Daily Vitality
Stretching is a key component in developing a safe full range of motion for the joints, promoting balanced muscles, improved posture and proper movement patterns, all of which removes those niggly aches and pains you may feel every day that aren't bad enough to visit your doctor, but impact on the quality of your daily life.
7) Improves Your Training Results
The simple act of stretching is the perfect partner to resistance training. Combining resistance training with stretching causes slight tearing in the muscle tissue which is how you create muscular growth and improvements in strength.
8) Better Skin and Hair
As stretching promotes blood flow and nutrients to feed your muscles, many women find that the condition of their hair, skin and nails vastly improves when they embark on a fitness program that includes regular stretching. Pass the yoga mat please!
9) Your Wardrobe Will Look Better
Stretching is a wonderful way of improving how you look in your favourite LBD by improving your posture! So many of us now have hunched shoulders thanks to endless hours on computer or hunched over our phones / tablets. A little gentle stretching each day is a relaxing, low impact way to improve how your wardrobe looks by sorting out your posture and ensuring your clothes sit better on your frame.
10) Stretching Helps You Sleep Better
Yoga postures such as the Sleeping Swan, Happy Baby, Bridge, Seated Side Bend and Pose of a Child are all believed to promote a better nights sleep if done right before you hit the sack. When you perform the stretches, do so with a focus on your breathing ensuring you fill and expel your lungs properly to help your body to prepare for rest. It's also a great tension reliever after a stressful day. Enjoy ZZZZZzzzzzzzz.