What is Stretching ?
Stretching, as it relates to physical health and fitness, is the process of placing particular parts of the body into a position that will lengthen, or elongate, the muscles and associated soft tissues. Upon undertaking a regular stretching program a number of changes begin to occur within the body and specifically within the muscles themselves. Other tissues that begin to adapt to the stretching process include the fascia, tendons, ligaments, skin and scar tissue.
Stretching properly is a little more technical than just swinging your leg over a park bench. There are methods and techniques that will maximize the benefits and minimize the risk of injury.
In this article we’ll look at some of the most common questions people ask about how to stretch properly. Questions like: What is flexibility and what is stretching? Which muscles should I stretch? When should I stretch? Should I stretch every day? Plus a whole lot more.
Two Types of Stretching
Although there are many different ways to perform a stretch, they can all be grouped into one of two categories: Static or Dynamic.
- The term static stretches refers to stretches that are performed without movement. In other words, the individual gets into the stretch position and holds the stretch for a specific amount of time.
- The term dynamic stretches refers to stretches that are performed with movement. In other words, the individual uses a swinging or bouncing movement to extend their range of motion and flexibility.