Before you begin your exercise, be sure to stretch your muscles. Proper stretching will increase your flexibility and minimize your chances of pulling a muscle.
By doing these simple stretches, you can become loose and limber in a few minutes.
Hold each stretch for 10 to 20 seconds. Make sure not to bounce while stretching, stretch to the point where you feel resistance.
- Standing Hip Stretch
Start from a standing position. Take a full step forward with your left foot. Gently bend left knee to lower hips, keeping right heel on ground and right knee straight. Switch and repeat.
- Standing Quad Stretch
While standing, bend your left leg and reach back to grasp you left ankle. Pull your foot toward your buttocks while placing other hand on a bench or chair for support. Switch and repeat.
- Standing Wall Pushes
Stand arms length from a sturdy pole or wall. Place your hands on the wall at shoulder height, bend the elbows, lean in from the ankles, and press your body upright until you feel a slight strain in your legs.
- Standing Calf Stretch
While standing, extend one leg in front of you and place the heel on the floor, toes in the air. Keeping the back straight, bend forward at the hips until you feel the stretch of the calves. Switch and repeat.
Remember that a cool down after your exercise is as important as your warm up. Use these same stretches when you finish exercising to prevent stiffness and muscle soreness after your workout.