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Lose Weight Advice: Keep That Stretch In Check
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Lose Weight Advice: Keep That Stretch In Check

Hey guys, this time I'll be talking about the importance of streching. My previous articles were on the importance of cardio and weight training to lose weight, but when these are combined with a good flexibility, there is a greater overall effect.

Stretching is the most neglected part of a workout(yes! it is a part and not something you do after a workout)There are a lot of benifits of stretching to start with, even if you are not looking to lose weight. These are:

1. Range of joint motion increase. This helps to relieve pain and prevent any injuries arising from stiffness. During weight training it allows one to put a greater amount of force over an increased range. This trains the muscles fully and no muscle fiber is left.

2. Movements become easier and balance improves a lot. This may not seem that important right now, but look at it from the point of view of a person who is so inflexible that he can't even tie his own shoe laces!

Now coming to flexibility exercises. There are various types but I'm gonna mention just two which are most relevant to us at this level.

a. Dynamic stretching exercises: These are the stretches which are to be done at the start of a workout. The stretch is not held at all. It includes free movements of joints. Eg: rotating the shoulder in circular motion, kicking up in the air. Remember these are to be done in a controlled way and no jerk is to be given.

b. Static passive stretching exercises: These are to be done at the end of a workout with the help of some person or object or just with your free limbs. These include exercises like holding ones ankles with hands and pulling the head towards knees while keeping the knees locked.

Technique for static passive exercises:

To start off use a 1 - 2 - 3 technique, i.e.

1 - Reach a point of mild discomfort

2 - Hold here till 10 seconds

3 - Release

During all this keep breathing normally. The breathing is often forgotten totally which may lead to one feeling dizzy, so please breathe normally. Repeat 1-2-3 two to three times. A lot of videos are available on the net on what exercises are to be done. If still you have any doubts you can ask me on my website.

Now comes the science, which I know people aren't interested. So I'll make it short. The 'hold that stretch' part is so important because here ones golgi tendon organs, after a period of 10s, send a signal to the brain to relax the muscle. This overcomes the muscle spindle signals and relax the muscle. If you stretch properly and hold, you will be able to feel the muscle relaxing after 10s. It feels amazing! Trust me.

Okay, enough with the science bull****. You get the point right. Just do a 20 min stretch at the end of your workout for seven days and you will feel the difference in 7 days. Heck, you will feel it the first day. Just try it.

"til next time.

Happy exercising!

Street Talk

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