A big part of beginning a physical activity program is getting used to the feel of using your muscles, and flexibility can be a great place to start. Just as with other kinds of physical activity, it's best to start slowly and increase your efforts gradually.
Stretching exercises will help you as you become more active. Stretching before and after aerobic exercise (even walking) and muscle strengthening may prevent injury and reduce muscle soreness and cramping. One approach is to take 5 to 10 minutes before and after each program to stretch your muscles. Be sure to stretch the muscles you will be using when you exercise.
Try some of these stretches.
Stretching can also be a good way to relax. You may want to try something like tai chi, or see:
Other Works Consulted
- Anspaugh DJ, et al. (2011). Improving flexibility. Wellness: Concepts and Applications, 8th ed., pp. 151–164. New York: McGraw-Hill.
|Primary Medical Reviewer||E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine|
|Specialist Medical Reviewer||Heather Chambliss, PhD - Exercise Science|
|Last Revised||October 26, 2011|
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