London Personal Trainers share the power of assisted stretching
We hope that you enjoyed the tricep dip variations in your workouts from last week’s blog! If you did many of them, you may have felt what we like to call ‘happy muscle pain’ (HMP) in the back of your arms for a few days? Great stuff! This means you have broken down some muscles and built new ones (while burning lots calories to do so!) But, did you remember to stretch the triceps after every workout? We hope so. If not, get one of our fabulous personal trainers to do it for you!
What is assisted stretching and why is it good? Assisted stretching is using the help of another person (if your friend knows what they are doing then great, but a personal trainer who definitely knows what they are doing is the greatest) to help you to lengthen your muscles so that you can stay relaxed in the process. Assisted stretching consists of the last ten minutes or so of every workout session we do with our clients. (Needless to say, it is our clients’ favourite part of the hour!)
Although there is a lot of debate whether stretching actually helps to avoid HMP or “delayed onset muscles soreness (DOMS)”, we recommend stretching and are aware of its many benefits:
*lengthens the muscles to aid flexibility and movement around the joints
*lengthens the muscle to help to avoid tears or injuries
*increases blood circulation
*fights water retention
*improves sport performance
(For further benefits of stretching have a look at this extensive list: http://www.topix.com/forum/med/massage-therapy/TP1RSKNL44GCC4DN1)
Wow! With all the benefits of stretching, why don’t we do so after every workout?
Most people don’t have the time to stretch with the belief that perhaps it isn’t as important as the exercise session itself.
Furthermore, many people are not sure how to stretch, how long to hold the stretch for (we recommend at least 30 seconds for each muscle), and where they are supposed to feel the stretch. This is where assisted stretching from a personal trainer is crucial. We take the time to help you to stretch every major muscles used in your workout and make sure that you feel a stretch but ensure that it isn’t painful (it should never be painful) and in fact that it feels pleasant.
If we can part with one important advice from today’s blog, it is to make time for stretching at the end of every workout!