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Stretching: It’s Not Just a Girly Thing

Who said that stretching is just for women?  The truth of the matter is that stretching before any form of exercise, even walking to the corner store, is important for both men and women.  Why?  Here’s an example.

A recent trip to the doctor reveals that you need to lose weight.  Asked if you are exercising you reply, “No.” 

After you are instructed to begin an exercise routine, you decide to go for the recommended 20-minute walk.

Halfway through the walk, you feel the muscles in your legs start to ache as well as your back.

If stretching for 10 minutes beforehand had been done, your muscles would have warmed up and there would be less aches and pains as a result.

Stretching

Specific to weight training for men, one professional advises a 5-10 minute cool down encompassing these stretching exercises:

Sit on the floor with legs spread apart.  Place your hands in front of you slowly, and inhale and exhale.

Take hold of your right foot and grab the toes; do the same with your left foot all the time placing your head down. Finally, slowly sit up.

Of course, for free-form exercise such as walking, another stretching routine can be utilized.

Place your hands against a wall, and place your right leg as far back as possible while your foot is flat against the floor surface and hold the position for 30 seconds.  Repeat the same exercise with the left foot.

In addition, lifting each leg behind you and holding it with one hand against your back for 30 seconds should also be implemented.

Stretching is important to keep the muscles flexible, decrease soreness, and diminish the chances of injury.  Studies have shown that “long-term stretching can provide overall flexibility.”

 

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