How to Create a Stretching Routine

How to Create a Stretching Routine

If you have a body, you need to stretch it. Regular stretching improves your range of motion, reduces your risk of injuries, relieves pain, and just feels great. Getting started on a stretching routine may seem daunting at first, but all it takes is a little time and a few techniques. Here are some tips to get you started.

Find a Time: Stretching once is good. Stretching every day? That's even better. Set yourself up for success by finding a time during the day that you're most likely to stick with. First thing in the morning can be a great place to start, but it's not the only option. You can stretch before bed, before exercising, or even on a work break. Just find a time that works for you and stick with it. 

Assess Your Goals: What do you want to achieve with your stretching routine? What areas do you want to focus on? Your routine will differ based on whether you're looking to relax, gain energy, increase your flexibility, relieve specific tension, or just feel amazing. Choose a goal, and work from there.

Research a Routine: There's no need to reinvent the wheel. With your goals in mind, hit the internet to find a routine that would work for you. YouTube is full of reasonably lengthed options. There are also plenty of text-based resources available that will help you get a few moves under your belt quickly. Here's a good one to get started:

Start Small: There's no need to wake up an hour early to have time to get the full benefits of stretching. In fact, getting a few stretches in here and there can make a big difference. Try doing a few neck and shoulder rolls while waiting for your coffee to brew. Stretch out your calves while waiting for the bus, or do some seated side stretches while waiting for the kids to get in the car. Little bits add up, so don't be afraid to just work stretching in wherever you can.

Listen To Your Body: Stretching feels good - though sometimes that means "so good it hurts." A small amount of sensation is to be expected as your body stretches. A large amount of pain, however, certainly isn't. Listen to your body as you stretch, and stay away from movements or intensities that cause a large amount of discomfort. 

Support Your New Routine With a Healthy Diet: What you eat has an impact on how you stretch. The key is hydration. A well hydrated body is more flexible, and it allows you to get the most out of every movement. Keep your body functioning at its best by supporting it with the nutrition it needs. Adding a greens powder to your routine gives you an extra opportunity to hydrate while making sure your digestive system has the probiotics and enzymes it relies on to thrive.

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