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Exercises

Post-Workout Cooldown Stretches

When you plan your workouts, you probably focus on the warmup, duration, and intensity. Cooling down and stretching after exercising often get overlooked.

If this sounds familiar, it might be time to rethink your routine. When it comes to physical wellness, recovery is far too important to ignore.

Just 10 minutes of post-workout stretching will:

  • help your joints and muscles gain mobility
  • facilitate lactic acid dispersion
  • alleviate some post-workout muscle soreness
  • act as a catalyst for improving flexibility while your muscles are warm

Cooling down and stretching also provide worthwhile psychological effects on the body that are essential to help you restore it to a sense of homeostasis. Stretching can also help you improve your joint’s range of motion.

10 post-workout stretches

You won’t need any equipment for this stretching routine.A yoga mat is optional for added comfort and cushioning.

1. Lunge stretch

The lunge stretch helps mobilize your hips. It can also help relax your hamstrings and glutes.

Muscles stretched: hamstrings, glutes, groin muscles

  1. Take a large step forward with your right leg, and then lower your body down so your left knee is on the ground.
  2. Focus on sinking your hips down deeper into the stretch without overstretching.
  3. Hold this position, and then switch legs.
  4. Hold for 30 seconds on each leg.

2. Stand and reach stretch

Standing and reaching for your toes is an effective way to increase your torso’s range of motion and increase your hamstring flexibility.

Muscles stretched: hamstrings

  1. Stand upright with good posture. Keep your shoulders back, abs tight, chest out, and hips forward.
  2. Keep your core tight and posture strong as you bend forward at the waist, reaching downward for your toes.
  3. Reach as far down as you can. You should feel a tightness build up in your hamstrings. Rest on whatever part of the leg or floor that you can reach and hold.
  4. Hold this position for 30 seconds.

3. Squat stretch (frog)

The squat stretch increases the mobility of your hip joints. It also increases the flexibility of the entire posterior chain including the glutes, hamstrings, and calves.

Muscles stretched: quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes

  1. Start upright with your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart.
  2. Bend your legs and drop your buttocks down into the lowest squat position you can comfortably hold yourself in.
  3. Focus on breathing in order to help your hips relax and fall deeper into the stretch.
  4. Make sure to keep your knees pointed outward away from your midline.
  5. Hold this position for 30 seconds.

4. Knee to chest stretch

This stretch increases the flexibility in both glute muscles: gluteus maximus and gluteus minimus.

Muscles stretched: glutes

  1. Stand up tall with your shoulders back, chest out, and glutes clenched.
  2. While balancing on your right leg, pull your left knee into your chest as tightly as possible.
  3. Hold your leg in firm to your body for 30 seconds, and then switch legs. If you have poor balance, you can do this stretch lying on the ground.

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