Nothing beats the adrenaline rush after a solid workout, but it’s easy to pass on stretching when you’re short on time. Here’s the thing, taking just a few minutes to stretch will help you avoid pain, make your body more resistant to injury and keep you nimble.
Whether you’re a weekend warrior or have just started exercising, try these 4 stretches next time you sweat for a better post-workout recovery:
1. Loosen Up Your Hips
Also known as the seated groin stretch (ouch?), the Butterfly actually helps to ease your hips. Sit on the floor with the soles of your feet together and your knees out. Grasp your feet with both hands and slowly lean forward keeping your spine straight. Hold for up to 30 seconds.
2. Hamstring Hero
Lie on your back, lift your knee up and grasp behind your thigh with both hands. Pull your knee close to your chest and hold. Increase the pressure as your muscles adjust to the stretch.
3. Pectoral Power
This one’s a bit like high-fiving the wall. Place your hand and forearm against the wall in line with your torso. Turn your body away from the wall and hold. Repeat with the opposite arm.
4. Targeting Triceps with a Towel
Yes, a towel can do wonders for sore shoulders and arms. With one arm bent, hold one end behind your head and grab the other end behind your back. Slowly pull down for a targeted stretch that hits your triceps and shoulders.
Pro Tip: Even if you’re sitting at a desk, monkeying up a construction site or long-haul driving, use these stretches after a long day at work. Stationary tasks can be punishing on your muscles.