In sports, it is crucial to not get injured because an injury can lead to the end of your career. It happens all the time, regardless if the athlete is famous, young, or older. Injury is an occurrence that must be avoided in every way, especially when your financial stability relies on your game. Thanks to flexibility trainings and exercises, you can reduce the chances of injury while playing you favorite sport. Though flexibility exercises are not high intensity workouts, there are many ways as to how flexibility helps prevent injuries.
Range of motion
Flexibility is clearly defines as the “range of motion” that is available for your body’s joints, such as in the hip and spine. The range of motion is significant since it allows your body to move freely without risking injuries or muscle twists. In your sports-related workouts, flexibility exercises are incorporated during the warm-up period and the cool-down time in order to help your body ease in and out of the strenuous fitness routine. By improving your range of motion, you can prevent injuries because your joints are well-prepared and seasoned to move fast and adapt to changes. When you are flexible, your sports performance will dramatically improve, and that could lead to more sports engagement and of course, more income.
Cardio + stretching
Spending hours every day doing cardio workout can be risky for your body’s health if you will not incorporate stretching exercises into your routine. However, if you have been an athlete for a long time or even if you are just starting in your sports career, you are probably aware that a warm-up and cool-down times are essential. Before you start your customized workout routine, you must engage in a warm-up stretching exercises in order to prepare your muscles and joints. After you are done with your fitness training, you must take part of a cool-down flexibility exercise so your body can easily transition from an intense workout to a normal daily activity.
By performing flexibility exercises, you cardio workout is better enhanced, and you can prevent injuries since you have conditioned your body for the intense training. The following muscles are prevented from getting tight and painful during your regular training session when flexibility is practiced:
- Hip flexors
- Hip adductors (groin area)
If flexibility exercises are not performed before or after your fitness and sports training, you can get hurt when your muscles and joints produce compensatory motion patterns like:
- Inwardly collapsing knees when landing on your feet or squatting.
- Outwardly rotating toes or left off heels when landing or squatting
- Increased movement of the lower back spine movement
Muscle tightness often occurs when you lack flexibility exercises, and weak muscles and joint motion can lead to increasing pressure on the body. With tight muscles, weakened soft tissues, and limited range of motion in the joints, your sports performance is dwindling. Always engage in flexibility exercises in order to maintain your sports performance and prevent any injury.
Improved blood flow
Flexibility exercises promote the improvement in blood flow circulation. Significantly improved circulation highly contributes to the capability of your body to recover faster. Your tissues are prone to wear and tear during your regular workout routine, especially when you are lifting weights. Stretching can help regulate you blood flow, which can lead to faster tissue and muscle recovery. With an internal system that heals much faster, you can prevent injuries.
Many injuries during a sports game or fitness training is caused by absence of mind. Stretching allows the mind to become calm and peaceful, which can result in a focused state on your workout schedule. You can prevent harming yourself when you have the complete and undivided presence of mind while you engage in your sports training workout.
Guide to proper flexibility exercise
As a sports athlete, you must execute flexibility exercises or stretching regularly, but not too much. Remember that too much of everything is bad for your health.
- 10 minutes before your regular workout routine, execute stretching for your warm-up period. Stretching increases the flow of your blood to your ligaments and muscles, which reduce the risk of possible injury.
- After you finish your training session, allow yourself 10 minutes to do stretching exercises in order to help your body cool-down from the extensive workout activity. Cooling down helps your body avoids soreness and aids in the removal of waste products from your body.
- You should perform flexibility routines at least three times in a span of one week. Stretching can be done before and after a sports workout, or can be done as a stand-alone exercise routine in a daily basis.
- Always remember to breathe naturally while doing your stretches. And only perform stretches that are suitable for your body and needs. Do not push yourself too hard, and only execute flexibility exercises that you can perfectly handle.
- If you are unsure of the flexibility exercises to practice, consult your sports trainer or a fitness expert. It is better to be sure of what stretches are good for you than just wringing it along the way.
- You should know that flexibility exercises vary in types and purposes. Choose the stretching techniques that are closely related to the sports you are involved in. You will know what to choose by asking professional guidance, or by researching on your own. Every stretch method comes with a description and main purpose. Take advantage of the information you can find and choose the stretches that can enhance your chosen career.
Flexibility exercises are essentially needed to help you prevent injuries that could ruin your sports performance. They come hand-in-hand with cardio and other forms of sports workouts, and you must incorporate stretching in your regular sessions.Always keep in minds that prevention is better than cure. And in your case it is advantageous to engage in flexibility exercises regularly than jeopardize your game and your career.