If, after an intense workout, you go straight for a cold shower or grab a snack to rejuvenate yourself, you must stop doing so immediately. Nearly every fitness trainer recommends that the first thing to follow after a workout must be nothing else but stretching.
Still, a vast majority of people don’t follow the routine of post-workout stretching, mostly because they are ignorant of its physiological and psychological benefits. However, before practicing any form of stretching it is advised that you consult with your fitness trainer, as he/she would advise what type of stretching would be the most beneficial for you.
According to some of the most renowned fitness trainers, here is why post-workout stretching is considered so important:
#1. Gets rid of lactic acid
From the moment you start your workout, your body starts the production of lactic acid. Due to this, your body muscles become fatigued and sore. By practicing post-workout stretching, this lactic acid that gets collected in the body gets eliminated hence giving way to relaxed muscles.
#2. Enhances circulation of blood
You must have noticed that whenever you are in between an intense workout, your heart starts to beat too rapidly since it needs to pump the blood to different parts of the body. Post-workout stretching helps in bringing the skyrocketing heart rate to the normal resting rate. Moreover, the original resting heart rate also gives way to muscle repair and recovery.
#3. Reduces Physical Pain
When you practice stretching without any leniency, you would observe that the pain that usually occurs after a workout gets reduced to a great extent. This is because after a workout your muscles become too stiff. With stretching, the muscles become relaxed hence giving way to reduced pain.
#4. Enhances Flexibility
One of the most crucial benefits of post-workout stretching is that it enhances your muscular flexibility. Through stretching, the contracted muscles get a bit relaxed. They eventually go back to a more pleasant state. This is what causes enhanced flexibility in your body. Over a period, you would observe that you can stand, bend, and squat with fewer efforts than before. This is all because of regular post-workout stretching.
#5. Alleviates Stress
Apart from the physiological benefits, post-workout stretching dispenses a wide range of psychological benefits as well, and alleviating stress is amongst them. Studies have revealed that consistent post-workout stretching can help you by improving your mood, relaxing your mind, and alleviating your stress levels.
#6. Gives a Boost to Your Energy
If you practice post-workout stretching suitably, you would most probably notice that you have higher levels of energy than before. After you complete your workout, your body initiates the cooling processwhich releases endorphins- chemicals that induce the feeling of happiness. Through stretching, this cooling process gets slowed down which gives you the boost of energy.
You must think of post-workout stretching as the means of hitting a reset button, that would restore equilibrium in your body, after high levels of stress. Most of thefitness trainers include post-workout stretching as a mandatory part of the workout. Therefore, instead of viewing post-workout stretching as an optional component of your workout, you must see it as a vital addition to your workout routine.