What’s the difference between stretching and warming up before you exercise?
Warming up before exercising is just doing a lower intensity of the exercise you are going to be doing. This helps get the blood circulating and lets your body know that you are preparing for exercise.
Stretching before exercising helps to lessen the chance of injury, increase your performance during exercise, and decrease the amount of soreness after you are done.
Just getting back to exercise?
For people who are just getting back outside to exercise, it is good to start with a five minute warm up. For people starting a walking regimen, warm up by walking in place at first. Next, use the stretching exercises below before you start out. Then, start out walking slowly for about five minutes total. You can then start walking at a faster pace. You should be able to carry on a conversation as you walk. As your workout becomes harder the you will need more time to warm up.
When you are done, do another light stretch.
By following these simple steps it can help to avoid injury while exercising.
Three easy stretching exercises
Here are 3 easy stretching exercises to get you started before going on that walk or hike:
Stand up straight while holding onto a wall in front of you. Put your left leg behind you, keeping your left heel on the floor. Bend right knee and lean toward the wall. You should feel the stretch in the calf of the left leg. Repeat with right leg.
Stand on your left leg and lift your right foot off the floor. Gently point your toes on the right foot and hold for a few seconds. Next flex your right foot pointing your toes upward. Do this five or ten times Then switch feet.
While standing on your left leg lift the right foot off the floor. Gently point your toe and rotate your ankle. Do about ten circles in each direction. Then switch and lift your right leg while lifting your left foot off the floor and do the same stretch. This exercise can be performed while standing, sitting, or lying on your back with leg raised.
The best things to remember to avoid injury
The best thing to remember to avoid injury is to:
- Warm up before exercising
- Stretch your muscles after you warm up
- Stretch your muscles again after you exercise
Getting outside in the Hudson Valley and enjoying the weather is a great way to celebrate the end of the cold weather. These tips should help you to enjoy exercising without injury. If you or anyone in your family has foot pain or a foot injury call our Wappingers Falls office at 845 298-9074 . We are here for you whether you need a regular or emergency appointment.
By David Schlam