Kids have been taught to stretch before exercise. I remember that! This message was engraved in my head for many years. The concept of stretching has its own place and time. First of all think to yourself, why do I stretch? Honestly, many do not stretch at all! That will be another day. O.K. Why do you stretch. Because I was told to? I think it will make me taller? (Don't laugh, I have seen it.) Many do not know what the benefits of stretching. They know some how it is good. I had to become a trainer to find out the full anatomy of the stretching muscle. Let's put stretching aside for a second. Muscles produce movement. That is it. Flexion (Shortening of the muscle) produces the most power. The sliding theory agrees that Myosin, very thick, and Actin, very thin proteins of the muscles interact in joining meshing to each other. The same direction when you bring your hands closer together. Myocin carries the ability to make adenosine triphosphate. Most commonly ATP. The muscle comes together and abra codabra, energy. Now back to stretching. Stretching elongates the muscle. Which is good after a workout. The problem is, we were told to stretch before working out. Why is that a problem? During your physical event, your muscles are shortening the majority of the time. Remember the interacting proteins? Getting the picture! As muscles get shorter, they need to be stretched out. If not, range of motion decreases. This is the perfect time to stretch those muscles. If left alone not being stretched, overtime, you will have what is called a contracture. This will happen when the muscle stays short, decreasing the angle of joints. Every muscle should be stretched every day. Massage Therapists are trained to find these squeezed muscles. The muscle will have a ball. The Actin and Myosin do not relax to extend back where they should be. Thus need stretching, sometimes even manually breaking up that cluster. Most of the time, getting rid of these lumps will help you regain ROM, posture and will even relieve pain.
To sum this up, educate yourself on what you are doing. There is a time and a place for everything. Stretching is the finish up part of the workout. If you are not sure how to stretch, or what needs to be stretched, do not worry. My next blog will include this topic. This blog is a basic and broad for a reason. There is not and will not be a stretching regimen that fits every body. This is why its important to consult with a health professional. Thanks for reading. Remember, as the Christmas time arrives, be safe . God bless.