Run Stretching Guidance

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    Admin Mediterra

    In some of our live training sessions we will explore dynamic and static stretching exercises. But you may have some that you use already. You may also review some trusted sources on the internet. You may contact a trainer at your fitness club to get personalized instruction on how to develop a routine that fits your needs. 

    First, be very conservative about starting new stretches, and in how far and how much you do. Though helpful in the long-term, immediately your body may react protectively by tightening up even more. Stretching needs to be done with some understanding of technique and feedback from the body.


    Should One Stretch Before Practice?

    I would recommend using dynamic stretches that help the body parts move through their full active range of motion, with activities that simulate parts of the running motion.

    Some joints need to become more stiff and stable for running – knees, lower back and neck. Some joints need to become more soft and mobile for running – ankles, hips, shoulders.

    If there are parts of your body that are short and tight, then it may be better to follow a stretching routine for those at times apart from your running workouts, so that once they are stressed by the stretching, they have time to repair and recover before you make them work in running. If they are stretched beyond current limits and strained just before going running, it is possible for them to tighten up even more out of an automatic protective response, which could actually end up causing more strain or injury. 

    Dynamic stretching in patterns that simulate running mechanics will move your tissues through their current active range of motion and the body will respond by filling with blood and loosening up to the range you are current capable of.


    Should One Stretch After Practice?

    This is a very common question, but not easy to answer for each person’s individual needs and response to workout stresses. Remember that tightening of muscles is a protective response – sometimes that should be left alone and sometimes that should be coaxed into loosening up. After the activity, loosening up is generally a good idea.

    The first needs after a work out are:

    • To let tissues loosen up, vascular system to open up,
    • To encourage the body to flush waste products from the system,
    • To reduce inflammation, and
    • To remove stress on joints and tissues.

    Some stressed muscles, and tissues may react negatively to stretching after a workout, while stretching might help others open up the flow of waste move out.

    Beneficial after-workout activities may include:

    • walking
    • gentle swimming
    • walking in deep water (works better than compression clothing)
    • alternating cold and hot water immersion
    • gentle rolling on a foam roller
    • some yoga moves


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