Performing leg stretching exercises can have a wealth of benefits on your overall health, especially if you have experienced a recent injury or have undergone lower extremity surgery. These exercises can be practiced in a gym or in the comfort of your own home, and are an important step in the rehabilitation process. Leg stretching exercises should be incorporated into your daily life.
Here are some of the benefits of stretching your legs on a regular basis.
Performing leg stretching exercises on a regular basis can be a great way to prevent leg injuries from developing in the future. You may want to consult with a physical therapist or fitness instructor to develop a stretching routine that is specifically designed for your needs.
The primary function of leg stretching exercises is to elongate your muscle fibers. Expanding your muscle fibers results in greater flexibility. Muscles that are more fluid and pliable perform better thus reducing the tendency to injury.
Many times while working hard in the gym you can push your musculature too far. If the muscles are not prepared that is a sure sign towards injury.
Stretching your legs before and after exercise can help prevent muscle soreness from developing – especially if you spend time at the gym.
Stretching before exercise can mean a shorter recovery time in between workouts, and will help reduce any pain or soreness that you have previously experienced after a particularly heavy lifting workout or cardio session. Improved circulation and oxygen with leg stretching exercises aides in the immune response to long enduring workouts.
Some of the common injuries leg stretching exercises prevents are calf/hamstring strains, shin splints, plantar fascitis, knee chondromalacia patella, lumbar strains and thrombosis. Performing regular stretching can also be beneficial if you spend a lot of time sitting at work. Dedicate a a few minutes each day and perform simple leg stretching exercises to see the benefit.
Yoga and pilates are two great ways to help stretch the legs and increase your range of motion.
Stretching properly is also very important. Holding a stretch for 30-60 seconds gives your muscles time to warm up and elongate. Always work muscles slowly especially when they feel tight and never push them beyond their limit.
If your muscles begin to shake or fatigue stop stretching that region and work another area of the body. Bouncing and jumping increases the risk of muscle strain especially when leg muscles are not warmed up properly.
Active stretching is when the individual preforms the techniques on themselves. Passive stretching is when another individual, physical therapist, fitness instructor or team trainer performs the stretching on you.
Many people perform leg stretching exercises prior and after working out to reduce the risk of injury, diminish soreness after exercise and enhance athletic performance!