Stretching keeps your muscles flexible, strong, and healthy and we need the flexibility to maintain a range of motion in our joints. Without it your muscles will shorten and become tight. Then when you want to do some physical activity, you find they are weak and won’t extend fully. This will put you at risk of joint pain, strains, muscle damage and injury.
You might have wondered……..why are some people more flexible than others?
It can be to do with genetic make-up and how you train the muscles. Here are some factors that can influence it.
Age – You do tend to be less flexible as you get older.
Connective Tissue – The amount of elasticity you have in the tendons and muscles
Body Mass – The bigger you are the harder it can be to get into flexible positions.
HERE IS THE GOOD NEWS!
You can work on this and become more flexible.
TYPES OF STRETCHING – There are two types Static and Dynamic. We use both in Pilates, but it does favour the dynamic stretching as Joseph Pilates was always keen for us to be moving with flow whilst exercising.
Static Stretching is going into a position for 20-30 secs and this is best done when the muscles are warm. Dynamic Stretching is active movements leading to a stretch but not held at the end position.
What’s needed? – Regular Practice!
Improving your flexibility can take time and you will need to work on it regularly. It takes focus, mental strength, and persistence to reach your end goal. Stick at it and keep practicing!
There are a great selection of daily stretch classes incorporating both static and dynamic stretching in my on-demand video library. Why not give it a go!Favourite?