Today's guest post was written by Oscar King
Working out and keeping fit is great. Not only do you get to shave off a few years from your physical age, you get to become better looking and healthier. In fact, multiple studies have shown that people who workout are more likely to add an extra 5-10 years to their lives and are at less risk of developing any cardiovascular condition.
That said, you should also know that it is possible to get injured in the process, particularly when you don’t warm up, and we don’t mean the regular stretching that you may do before starting your workout. This is where dynamic stretching comes in. In case you don’t know what that is, dynamic stretching is simply the process of simulating the workout you want to do for 10-20 minutes before doing it.
For instance, if you’re going to play soccer, you should simulate high kicking and flexing the leg. The benefits of dynamic stretching are many. These include:
Increased Muscular Elasticity
The quickest way to developing an injury while exercising is by not getting adequately warmed up. Traditional stretching exercises usually don’t fully prepare you for the intensity of your workout. With dynamic stretching, your muscles become less stiff. Since you have to gradually increase the pace, your muscles aren’t quite as “shocked” or strained as when you use traditional stretching techniques. Since there’s less sudden strain and the body is already attuned to the movements, you are therefore, less likely to suffer any injuries.
Warms You Up Faster than Traditional Stretching
If you were to go the standard or traditional warm-up route, you’ll need to run, jog or do one or more low-level cardio activities for about 8-15 minutes for your body and muscles to warm up. While there is nothing wrong with that, dynamic stretching does it even faster and more effectively by targeting your whole body and those muscles you’ll be using during the particular exercise. If you’re a huge fan of traditional low-level cardio, do the dynamic stretching and then follow it up by a few minutes of low-level cardio for added benefits.
Increased Heart, Blood Flow and Respiratory rate
Jumping into any exercise or workout without any warm ups is likely to put a lot of strain on your lungs, heart and muscles. Dynamic stretching makes sure that this doesn’t happen. By the time you’re done with dynamic stretching, your body is already accustomed to increased blood flow, heart and respiratory rate. With the increased capacity therefore, you’ll be able to go on for longer, build more stamina, finish more reps and get even better results from your workouts.
It also helps reduce the chances of muscular, cramps thanks to increased muscular blood flow and more flexible/adapted muscles. Some good examples of dynamic stretching routines include, arm lunges, arm swings, leg kicks, inch worm, high knees, butt kicks, quick medium speed jog, plank, torso twists, and Saigon squats among others.
Lastly, just to be safe, talk to your physician before commencing any new stretching regimen.
About the author:
This article was written by Oscar King. Oscar is currently studying nutrition and personal fitness at UCF in Orlando, FL. In addition to attending schools, Oscar researches various health related topics and composes content for Rejuve Health Clinics - Orlando's premier men's health clinic. If you would like to connect with Oscar or read more of his articles you can visit him on Google+.