Did you know stretching should be part of your daily routine?
Can some simple physical motions dramatically improve your overall health, wellness, and quality of life? In the case of stretching, the answer is most definitely yes. Stretching exercises are a staple of physical therapy for just that reason. Some people think that stretching is an unnecessary part of exercising. The truth is that stretching is a necessary component of exercise.
In fact, according to our in-home physical therapists, stretching is an important part of one’s daily routine – whether you’re exercising or not! Keep reading to learn more about the different types of stretching, and how they can benefit your overall health!
What types of stretching can I do?
The goal of stretching is to improve range of motion, flexibility, and muscle elasticity. Stretching typically involves the connective tissue, a muscle or a tendon.
The top 5 most common stretching exercises you can incorporate into your daily routine are as follows:
- Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation (PNF)
- Low Load
PNF entails holding and controlling techniques to activate specific receptors in muscles. This technique improves muscle length and decreases muscle tension. Ballistic stretch physical therapy is a rapid bouncing motion to stretch a muscle.
Dynamic stretching entails stretching with motion at different speeds and distances.These movements are performed in a controlled and slow manner. Examples include torso swings, arms swings and leg swings.
The low load stretching technique is a gradual application of tension to enhance connective tissue remodeling. Static stretch physical therapy involved stretching the muscle and holding it for a few seconds.
If you aren’t quite sure which of these exercises would be best for your condition and/or body type, have no fear! A physical therapist will determine the best stretching exercises for your affected area and implement them into your at-home treatment plan.
These stretching exercises may include quadriceps stretches, knee stretches, groin stretches, calf stretches, and more.Your physical therapy can also show you how to do easy stretches with a towel at home. Knee stretches are very common in all age groups, because knee injuries are common due to overuse or athletic injuries.
Activities like running and biking can result in tight quadriceps muscles. Keep in mind that developing tight muscles can predispose you to injury. If so, quadriceps stretches will be implemented into your treatment plan.
5 reasons you should begin stretching regularly
- Stretching heightens your energy levels. The increased circulation increases energy levels. Learning to stretch properly will lead you to a more active lifestyle. According to results of a new systematic review, “moderate-grade evidence seems to support strengthening and stretching exercises to help ease chronic neck pain.”
- Increased blood circulation. Muscles require sufficient oxygen and nutrients in order to perform well. Stretching ramps up blood flow and transports oxygen and nutrients.
- Stretching prior to exercising helps the muscles to achieve maximum range of motion. It also helps strengthen the muscles. That is why during physical therapy stretching is a main focus.
- Stretching helps reduce muscle tension.You’ll feel the rewards of stretching during your daily routine, walking, or lifting!
- Stretching enhances joint range of motion. It enables the body part to move easier. For more dynamic movement, stretching increases muscular coordination. Some physical therapy sessions focus on a muscle group instead of just one muscle for stretching.
Stretching can improve your mobility
Stretching takes on special importance when you’ve become less mobile due to issues such as osteoarthritis. The less you move your joints, the greater the likelihood that your muscles and connective tissues will lose some of their length.This change obviously limits your joint motion even further and leaves you in even more pain.
It’s quite common for a physical therapist to prescribe various stretching exercises to individuals suffering from chronic pain conditions. Stretches naturally support physical therapy recommendations such as walking, heat therapy, or massage therapy in increasing blood flow to painful joints and widening your pain-free range of motion.
Chronic pain syndromes often involve tight muscles. Conditions such as fibromyalgia and its cousin, myofascial pain syndrome, cause knots in your muscles that limit muscle motion and trigger referred pain to other parts of the body. Regular stretching can help you “untie” those painful knots.
Stretching in physical therapy
Whether you’re playing a game of tennis, training for a mini-marathon, or walking through the neighborhood, physical therapy can help you make the most of your activities! It’s important to make sure you’re doing the right kind of stretches before and after your workout. Our in-home physical therapists can put together an exercise routine for your specific type of workout.
They can guide you towards which types of stretches are the best for your current physical condition and the type of activities you’re participating in.
Make sure you’re doing the right exercises in the correct way to prevent injuring yourself. You’ll want to make an appointment with a qualified physical therapist to learn what stretches are right for you. Physical therapy can help you make the most of your workouts and improve your overall health, all from the comfort of your own home.
Contact our office today and make an appointment!
Whether you choose to see a physical therapist or not, stretching should be a part of your daily routine! Find ways to work it into your schedule, and we promise you’ll feel better, perform better, and avoid injury. Our therapists can help you discover the benefits of stretching at home. Contact On the Go Therapy Services Inc. today to learn more!
Tags: physical therapy, physical activity, health, health and wellness, Stretching, healthy tips, natural treatment, natural pain relief, fitness, on the go therapy services inc., physical therapist, range of motion, physical fitness, Physical Health