Stretching is an important exercise regimen in order to improve the flexibly of the muscles and connective tissues. Knowing how long you should hold a stretch is very essential in order to achieve maximum results in increasing the flexibility and strength of the muscles. Stretching does not only allow for increased flexibility, but improvement of the circulation and range if motion as well. Because of this, it is important to undertake stretches in the best duration possible in order to maximize the benefits of exercise

However, there are various contradicting views in regard to the time or duration of a stretch. Some proponents recommend 30 seconds of stretching in three sets. Others may claim that 15 seconds stretch is already good. The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons recommends that an effective stretch can only be achieved after 30 seconds of a full stretching. Following the recommendations of experts and those working in the field of the musculoskeletal system, is best. Dr. Mohr, your Tampa chiropractor, can walk you through some of the most effective stretches and exercises in person.

Aside from knowing how long should you hold a stretch, it is also best to know the different considerations in stretching because no matter you stretch your muscles in the right duration, when you are stretching your muscles in a wrong way, you cannot maximize the benefits of the exercise and may also develop injuries.

Types of Stretches

It is important to know the types of stretches because you may need to perform more than one stretching technique. Types of stretches include:

Dynamic stretching
Ballistic stretching
Active Stretching
Passive Stretching
Static Stretching
Isometric Stretching
PNF-type stretching

It is recommended that you consult with your fitness instructor on how to do these types of stretches.

How to do Proper Stretching

Proper stretching involves series of steps in order to ensure a maximum stretch and adaptation of the muscles to the stretch. The first thing to note is having a good warm up exercise before the full stretching exercises. You can have a simple 10 minute aerobics exercise through brisk walking or stepping. After the warm up, which increases the reception of muscles to stretching, perform stretching exercise in the following order as recommended by experts:

Back stretch
Side stretch
Neck Stretch
Forearms stretch
Wrist Stretch
Triceps stretch
Pectorals stretch
Buttocks stretch
Groin stretch
Thigh stretch
Calves stretch
Shin stretch
Hamstring stretch
Instep stretch

While you are stretching, begin to count when you are already on the fullest or deepest part of the stretch. In this way, the maximum stretching will be attained. Some people count while they are still assuming the position of the stretch. Doing this reduces the time of a deep stretch for less than 30 seconds; thereby it will not be effective.

Take a deep breath and exhale while you are stretching. A good breathing exercise will also help you exercise the internal muscles used for breathing. Avoid jerky and bouncy movements while you are doing the exercise. Allow for smooth and gentle stretching techniques.

In case pain develops while you are stretching, pull back a little until you no longer feel the pain. Letting your muscles stretch beyond its preset flexibility may lead to muscle strains and sprains.

After the stretch, allow 10 minutes to cool down with the same warm up activities. Stretching is not a warm-up or cool-down technique, but a main exercise in its own context, and if you’re looking for a chiropractor in Tampa, FL that is knowledgable about treating the entire body, instead of just each little piece, come by the office conveniently located in the Wesley Chapel, Tampa Palms, and surrounding areas.