Is Stretching Important?
There is a lot of debate around the importance of stretching, one of the main problems is that much of the research is based on athletes and sports people. Obviously sports people are getting a lot of activity in their day and have great circulation in the muscles which makes us suspect that they may not need as much stretching as the average office worker.
In our opinion stretching is important, as it keeps the muscles active, flexible, strong, and healthy. Without adequate blood supply and flexibility in the muscles we are unable to maintain our exercise levels which is what will ultimately keep us fit and healthy.
Sitting is a major problem in the modern work environment and is a great example of how muscular tension occurs. Sitting for long periods causes tightness in the hamstring muscles in the back of the upper leg. This tension and shortening of the muscle reduces the range of the knee joint and can impact your walking, running and other activities. As you are also moving differently it can make you more susceptible to injuries.
As regular stretching keeps the muscle as close to it’s full length as possible it gives you more power in the muscles and doesn’t put as much pressure on the body as a whole.
Which Muscles Should I Focus on? | Is Stretching Important?
If we were to stretch every muscle in the body daily we wouldn’t have time for anything else! Firstly we need ti figure out which muscles we as an individual are shortening on a daily basis and come up with a specific stretch regime you our body. A remedial massage therapist, myotherapist or physiotherapist can help with this. Also with regular treatment we become aware of areas in our body that are tight as this can change over the year depending on our activities or inactivity.
Give It Time | Is Stretching Important?
Stretching takes time! Don’t expect 1 or 2 stretch sessions to “fix” your issues. In many cases this tension has built up over month, years or decades. As such stretching should be an ongoing lifestyle change and you should see cumulative effects.