Our DeskStand products all support healthy posture and healthy lifestyles. For that reason, we are continuously finding new ways to improve our health, wellbeing and posture. One way we’ve discovered this is through the power of stretching and how it can contribute significantly to our health.
Are you stretching enough? And how can stretching every day improve and impact your life?
How daily stretching benefits you
The kind of stretching you might be familiar with is the common warm-up practice to relax and elongate the muscles before doing strenuous exercise. You could also be more familiar with the kind of stretch exercises that are used in Pilates and Yoga. But LiveStrong suggests that simple stretch exercises that are done for a few minutes every day have many benefits you might not know about.
Here’s 5 reasons why you should be stretching more:
Sitting for long periods of time at a desk can naturally create poor posture and tight muscles. Stretching tight muscles can help counteract the negative impact of sitting for long periods of time. By stretching daily, you will loosen tight muscles and as the muscles become more flexible, you'll begin to see a change in stance and posture. Stretch daily and stand more to help correct bad posture problems.
Makes you feel great
If you’re familiar with any form of Pilates or Yoga exercises, you’ll know that stretching has a calming effect. This is because when we stretch, our muscles contract and lengthen which causes our body to relax. When our body is relaxed, our mind relaxes equally, which is also why stretching is a great way to release stress and anxiety. The added bonus is that because stretching releases endorphins, it naturally gives us a feel-good feeling which helps support our energy throughout the day.
Reduces the risk of injury
The old saying goes, “Prevention is the cure”, and it’s so true. Stretching ensures the body stays flexible with loose, strong muscles. This reduces the risk of hurting yourself if you ever push your body too far, especially when playing sport. It is also why stretching is an important part of beginning and ending any exercise. A well-stretched body means a flexible body with strong, long muscles that are not prone to tearing if your body is exposed to a vigorous situation. Not only does it reduce the risk of injury, it also reduces the pain of an injury as relaxing a muscle will reduce muscle tension.
Improves muscle function
Stretching – particularly before any energetic activities – improves your muscle function through an increased flow of blood, making the activity easier and allowing you to perform at your best. It also allows you to participate in a range of different activities with ease.
Ever wondered why your Pilates instructor has such toned muscles? Stretching is an important part of building, toning and elongating your muscles.
Increased blood flow
As stretching allows the body to loosen up it also encourages the flow of blood to your muscles. Your muscles get an oxygen supply and all the nutrients needed to function at their best. Stretching not only increases the blood flow to your muscles but also to your brain. This improves brain function, increasing your concentration levels and sharpening your senses.
The benefits of stretching are endless. Here are some simple ways you can stretch in the morning from Spark People.
Many of us may be underestimating the power stretching can have in different areas of our lives. Simply put, we should all be stretching more to improve our mental and physical wellbeing. Start your morning right with a few stretches every day. You'll be surprised at the difference it makes.
You may also want to read a previous article for more stretching inspiration: Standing Exercises