Stretching is important in any type of activity to make sure that tense and tight muscles are functioning through a complete range of motion. As we workout, we cause our muscles to contract and shorten. As we finish with our routines of intense training, stretching to release this added tension will help with recovery. Post exercise recovery is very important to enhance our function for the remainder of that day and for days after the exercise bouts. According to an article written by Dr. William A. Sands, stretching is the application of force to musculotendinous structures in order to achieve a change in their length, usually for the purposes of improving joint range of motion, reducing stiffness or sorenes, or preparing for activity. Historically, it has been thought that stretching should reduce muscle stiffness and delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS).Today, we will focus on static stretching by placing the desired muscle or muscle groups into the stretch range and maintaining that position for approximately 30 seconds. While in the stretch position, you will feel an increase in tension in the muscle and when performed safely will not cause pain. Static stretching is great as part of a post workout cool down because the muscle temperature is elevated and should be performed within approximately 5 mins. According to the National Strength and Conditioning Association Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning editors Thomas R. Baechle and Roger W. Earle, the increased body temperature increases the elastic properties of collagen within muscles and tendons, which allows greater stretch magnitude. In addition, static strecthing is a constant, slow, held position in a specific range of motion
that includes the relaxation and concurrent elongation of the stretched muscle. static stretching is safe, easy to learn, and can be performed by all ages. In conclusion, overall performance and decreasing chance of injury includes focus on stretching the workout routine. Neglecting stretching is not recommended since the chance of injury is increase by tight muscles and lack of range of motion of joints.
Train hard, train smart, and stretch!