We should all try to increase our flexibility and range of motion, as this can help develop a healthier body.
Fortunately, there are many types of stretches to increase your range of motion. When you perform them often enough, they can also help build strength, stability and improve your overall well-being.
The Best Stretches to Increase Range of Motion
You’ll want to know what types of stretches are best for increasing your range of motion in specific areas of the body.
Below, we’ve listed five of the greatest ones you should try if you want to be more flexible.
1. External Hip Rotation
This stretch is perfect for increasing flexibility in the external hip rotators, which help you move better.
To perform the external hip rotation, start on your back with your legs in the air and your knees flexed.
A stretch practitioner will gently rotate your knees to one side and hold the position for as long as you’re comfortable with it.
Your shoulders should remain anchored to the ground. After you finish one side, switch to the other.
2. Plow Pose
The plow pose targets your neck, shoulders, and back. You’ll want to get rid of the tension in those muscles to avoid pain and stiffness. Start this stretch by laying on your back with your legs out in front of you.
Your stretch practitioner will take your legs and point them toward the ceiling before slowly lowering your toes to the floor above your head (or as low as you’re comfortable with). Your hands should be behind your back for extra support.
3. Downward Facing Dog
This classic move will stretch the muscles in your hamstrings, hips, and calves. Improving the strength and mobility in those areas will improve your athletic performance.
You’re going to start on all fours for this stretch, and a stretch practitioner will assist you in hiking your hips in the air.
Your hands and feet should still be firmly on the ground, and your head will go down between your arms. Try not to lock your knees as you hold this pose.
4. Seated Twist
Everyone knows the importance of a flexible spine and hips, and the seated twist stretch targets those areas for better mobility.
To perform this move, sit on the floor with one leg outstretched in front of you, and the other one crossed over the extended leg. Your stretch practitioner will assist you in rotating your torso toward the bent leg.
Your arm should be placed on the inner thigh of the bent leg. After holding that position for as long as you’re comfortable with it, switch to the other side.
5. Angel Wings
You can’t forget about your upper back and chest! To do this stretch, you’ll need a foam roller or something similar to place on the middle of your upper back. Raise your arms above your chest, keeping them bent.
Your stretch practitioner will slowly guide your arms outward toward the floor, hold for a few seconds, and bring them back up to meet at your chest. This move makes both a great upper back stretch and massage.
Why is Range of Motion Important?
Photo Credit: Unsplash
Many people don’t realize how important it is to have a good range of motion. For starters, it keeps you out of pain and allows you to move easier!
Here are some other reasons why it’s important.
Better Posture and Balance
Stretching is shown to improve a person’s balance because it allows you to achieve proper alignment while correcting imbalances. The more flexibility you have in your muscles, the better your posture will be.
Better range of motion can also allow you to put yourself in certain positions easier, such as sitting cross-legged on the floor.
Better Physical Performance
You’ll notice greater movement in your body when you increase your flexibility and range of motion. This happens because your muscles are able to work more effectively.
You should run faster, jump higher, and hit harder with stronger muscles and a better range of motion.
Fewer Aches and Pains
Have you ever felt tightness in certain areas of your body?
That happens because the muscles have shrunk and need to be stretched. Stretching will lengthen those muscles and give you less pain.
Better State of Mind
Stretching is beneficial for more than just your body. When your body feels better, your mind will feel better.
Stretching is shown to bring feelings of relaxation, leaving you in a better state of mind. If you’re looking for a way to unwind, stretching is the perfect activity!
Things to Keep in Mind While Stretching
When you don’t stretch, your muscles become shorter and wider, which causes that tightness you may experience.
Stretching reduces muscle tension and increases blood circulation, which helps keep them limber. The more you keep at it, the more flexibility you will have.
To get all the benefits of the stretch, keep these things in mind:
- Slow and steady movements
- Stay hydrated
- Don’t bounce
- Stop if you feel pain
Are You Ready to Increase Your Range of Motion with These Types of Stretches?
One of the easiest ways to improve your flexibility is to stretch more. With a professional stretch practitioner’s help, you can ensure you get all the benefits and make sure you do the stretches correctly.
Live your life pain-free and try incorporating some of these stretches into your daily routine!
About The Author:
Rumzz Bajwa is a digital strategist and content marketer. She enjoys spending time with her family. She loves to go out and experience new moments whenever they came to light. Rumzz discovers satisfaction in investigating new subjects that help to extend her points of view. You can frequently locate her immersed in a good book or out searching for a new experience.