PDA

View Full Version : Good stretches?


Daisybelle
04-26-2010, 06:02 PM
Hello! :yay:

I have been walking about 5 days a week, trying to build up my endurance towards a 5k. One thing I'm lacking are some good stretches to do beforehand. I feel like I'm not stretching quite enough and have been unable to find any good information besides "Stretch first!" Can someone offer some suggestions to this big mama? :confused3

Any help would be appreciated! :flower3:

APrunner
04-27-2010, 08:01 AM
Okay, I may fall into the minority here, but I do not favor stretching beforehand. I warm-up, but don't stretch. I start with a short easy walk, then jog, then run. Stretching before you warm up is probably more likely to lead to injury. Your muscles are tight and not ready to be "pulled". You sometimes hear the rubber band analogy, your muscles before warm up are like a rubber band in a freezer. It will snap if you stretch it before it is warmed up.

I do some strenghtening exercises for my legs (not before running though), and these probably stretch me some.

I also do not favor holding stretches for long periods of time. You sometimes hear people say stretch and hold for 30 secs, etc. This may be fine if gymnastics is your sport/goal. If running/walking is your goal, this probably does more harm than good. Stretching and holding is not consistent with the motions you will be doing when exercising. You can probably find more info by looking up dynamic versus static stretching. If you are really looking to stretch, maybe walk some first to warm up, then consider something more along the lines of dynamic stretching as opposed to static stretching.

Just some thoughts.

Daisybelle
04-27-2010, 11:01 AM
That does make sense. I started out on my walk last night just going slower to begin with and then increasing my speed and that seemed to help some.
Thank you! :thumbsup2

crewmatt
04-27-2010, 11:12 AM
There is actually quite a bit of research that says exactly what you said, that static stretching before work actually reduces your bodies ability to do the work. I'll try to find it and put together a better post in a little while (work is oddly enough requiring some time right now go figure)

Daisybelle
04-27-2010, 11:17 AM
There is actually quite a bit of research that says exactly what you said, that static stretching before work actually reduces your bodies ability to do the work. I'll try to find it and put together a better post in a little while (work is oddly enough requiring some time right now go figure)

When you have time, that would be great! :worship: I'd like to be doing whatever will help my body move best.

crewmatt
04-27-2010, 06:44 PM
OK so I've read a little more into it and there are quite a few sites having lots of info, some of it good, some of it a bit sensationalist.

http://www.elitesoccerconditioning.com/Stretching-Flexibility/DynamicStretchingvsStaticStretching.htm

They seem to have a good site explaining what is happening in the 2 types of stretching.

I really like how they still also include some static stretching, but its post workout. So you're basically going to do this:

1-Warmup (5-10 minutes, get the heart rate up and muscles warm)
2-Dynamic Stretching
3-Workout
4-Cool Down (same basic thing as the warmup, 5-10 minutes to help your body clear any lactic acid, keep the blood flowing)
5-Static Stretching

Runners World had a good set on Dynamic Stretching.
http://www.runnersworld.com/article/0,7120,s6-241-287--13442-0,00.html

If you need Static Stretches I can post the routine I usually do.

Daisybelle
04-27-2010, 09:44 PM
I can't thank you enough! Those links were excellent. I even found a video demonstration on one of them! I had never even heard of dymanic stretching. I appreciate you taking the time to post that, it really is a big help to us novices. :flower3:

crewmatt
04-29-2010, 03:11 PM
Anytime. The most important thing is to seperate the 2 goals, fitness and flexibility. Basically you want to work on your flexibility AFTER you have done your workout, not before. You want to be warmed up and limber before you start working out, but you dont want to be trying to increase your flexibility until after the workout is done.

APrunner
04-30-2010, 06:55 AM
Crewmatt, good sites. I find it interesting that lunges are in there. I love lunges as part of my workout, but they are kind of tough (IMO) to be doing before a run. My legs are usually pretty tired after doing them. Great exercise though. Probably one of the best ones I can think of for a runner to do.

Some of the others in the runners world article are what I like to do at the end of my warm up, before starting the run.

Everyone is different, that is the important thing to remember. I never do static stretches now. In fact, the only times in my running life that I have been injured, were when I used to do them.

believe
05-01-2010, 10:00 PM
I think I am in the minority here, but depending on the individual's body you may need to stretch after a small warm up. I actually was injured by not warming up then stretching. I also still stretch in the end. If you end up with IT band issues you will want to be stretching everyday, throughout the day, including after a short warm up.

APrunner
05-04-2010, 12:57 PM
Came across the following article on dynamic stretches.

http://runningtimes.com/Article.aspx?ArticleID=19229

Enjoy!

Daisybelle
05-04-2010, 04:35 PM
Awesome! Thanks. :goodvibes