Although stretching exercises were ignored for many years in sport, Post-Exercise Stretching is now an accepted part of the training routine. Its purpose is not the same as the stretching exercises carried out when limbering up. Post-exercise stretching is part of the dynamic phase of the work when warming up, whereas post-exercise stretching is carried out after the effort as such – intensive training or competition – to “cool down” the muscular system, in the recuperation phase; and after the competition or training so that the muscles recover their initial elasticity, in order to avoid permanent tension on the tendons.
Stretching exercises are designed to relax the muscles and prevent soreness. In animals, stretching is instinctive. Through civilization, man has lost this instinct. In the martial arts, this gymnastic exercise was developed many years ago.
Stretching should not be considered as a relaxation activity.
Stretching is not an activity in its own right and is therefore part of all physical exercises.
A muscle which works shortens. With Stretching a muscle regains its original length and its contraction speed.
When Is Stretching Required:
It is best not to do too much stretching before training or a competition. Cardiovascular warming up and loosening up all the joints in the body is sufficient before the workout as such. After training or the competition, a good Stretching session is welcome. It should not be confused, however, with relaxation which can be carried out in an isolated place, in a comfortable position, in peace and quiet.
Every day, walking affects some muscles of your legs. Permanently working these muscles shortens them, hence the need to stretch them to prevent pinching in the lumbar spine resulting in sciatica.