Stretch to FitnessHolistic Fitness | September 25, 2010 | Share
All the exercise buffs who practice long distance running are seen to face a lot of complications and injuries, if not guided and trained properly. Over use of one’s body, being over ambitious and trying to take a short-cut, definitely doesn’t help a runner achieve that perfect run, and will definitely end up conversely affecting the body. It is said that to run one kilo meter, the body needs around 100 tons of energy to burn. Thus one should make sure that firstly the body has enough potential within, so as not to over work oneself and at the same time the extra calories is burned the right way. Stretching exercises are extremely important for a runner. These exercises can be divided into warm up and cool down exercises to be done before and after running. Stretching before running helps to increase the blood flow within the muscles while cool down stretching exercises helps a person get rid of the lactic acid mount up from the muscles which reduces the occasional soreness of the muscles.
Given below are some of the basic stretching exercises:
This exercise stretches the adductor muscles in the leg which is found in the inner thighs. In this exercise, stretch your legs sideways, as far as possible, bend down, put your hands on the floor and gradually push yourself down stretching your legs to the point at which you won’t be able to push it anymore. Always ensure that your feet are toughing the floor.
One of the best stretching exercises also known to be the best dynamic stretching exercise. Dynamic stretching exercises are the ones which consists of continuous strain on the muscles and are done in rapid succession. Dynamic stretching exercises help in increasing the heart rate. Lunges are to be done in two different ways stretching the hip flexors and the groin muscles. For the hip, put one of your legs forward into a deep lunge keeping the toes of the front leg pointing forward, while the toes of the hind leg should be curled under. Stay in that position for a few seconds and repeat the same with the other leg. Repeat the same exercise for the groin the only difference being that the inside edge of the foot is flat on the floor. Lower you torso as you perform both the exercises to feel your muscles stretching.
This exercise is for the knees. In this you have to sit down on the floor with one leg stretched out in front while the other leg is bent. Keep your back and head straight and bend down while you try to touch your toes. You will feel immense pressure along the inner thigh but is considered to be very effective for the knees and the thighs.
This exercise is for the front thighs. Stand against the wall and bend one of legs in a way that the heel touches the buttocks. Use the wall as a support. Stay in that position as long as possible and repeat the same with the other leg.
This is one of the best exercises for the calves as well as the ankle. Stand at the edge of a stair of an elevation which can be used as a replacement for stairs. Keep one leg on the ground and stand in a way that only half your foot is on the stair while the heel portion is hanging in mid-air. Now lift yourself up along the heels and slowly come down. Repeat the same atleast 10-15 times and repeat the same with the other foot.
One should be extremely careful before doing these exercises as any wrong move can lead to serious injury. Stop the moment any of these exercise start hurting you. Do not stretch yourself too much. Always consult your doctor before getting into any form of a physical activity.
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