When do you stretch and how often?

  • UncleverName

    Posts: 741

    Feb 16, 2009 10:16 PM GMT
    I'm trying to build up some strength, and only have so much time in a week.
    Stretching tends to be the first thing to go when I run out of time.

    To the guys that go to the gym (and especially the ones trying to put on weight):

    How often do you stretch and for how long?
    Are you consistent with it?
    Do you have problems if you don't stretch?

    Note that I'm not looking for advice. I'm just wondering what others actually do.
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    Feb 16, 2009 11:48 PM GMT
    I only stretch my calves and shoulders. I reliably stretch before a run, less so before swimming.
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    Feb 17, 2009 1:57 AM GMT
    I stretch religiously - every chance I get throughout the entire day. I'm actually on the floor right now stretching my legs while I type this.
    I do have problems if I don't stretch which is why I am consistent - especially before running or swimming. I know that, "scientifically," studies do not show too much benefit to stretching - but, it works for me well enough. I've been injury free for months.
  • zakariahzol

    Posts: 2241

    Feb 17, 2009 1:23 PM GMT
    I stretch every time before I start my muay thai practice. In all Muay Thai classes you must stretch. You need to have the flexibilty in order to execute a proper kick, and a proper punch. Stretching can be boring but important to avoid injury . However if I just go for a jog or a swim I probably just stretch my calf and do a few twist .
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    Feb 18, 2009 2:15 PM GMT
    I stretch every morning when I wake up (a series of about 10 minutes). Also 3 days a week i do pilates which is very streching focussed and I also stretch a little after work outs.

    I used to do 90 minutes yoga 6 days a week so this doesn´t feel like very much....

  • helium

    Posts: 378

    Feb 19, 2009 12:27 AM GMT
    I tend to do some stretching before I start a work out and also afterwards for about 15-20 min. That way I cover all the muscles that I work on and the ones that I don't.
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    Feb 19, 2009 7:24 AM GMT
    Never. Stretching is over-rated and now most studies have proven the same. Contrary to the old fashioned belief that one had to stretch before and after, most if not all major studies have found no benefit at all.
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    Feb 19, 2009 7:26 AM GMT
    I stretch before every workout. I stretch also during Yoga. I also do some stretches during a typical day. I just feel better for it.
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    Feb 19, 2009 1:49 PM GMT
    Triggerman saidNever. Stretching is over-rated and now most studies have proven the same. Contrary to the old fashioned belief that one had to stretch before and after, most if not all major studies have found no benefit at all.


    Depends what they mean by "stretch". Most of the stuff I see people doing in the gym is a waste of time. That doesn´t mean that all stretching is of no use.
  • gr8hands4you

    Posts: 117

    Feb 19, 2009 10:24 PM GMT
    I just had to get a word in with this thread. Stretching has many benefits although many individuals do them at the wrong times and overstretch joints sometimes causes injury. Most athletes should not do strenuous stretching before activities like running. This does not provide any advantage but uses up more reserve fuel you need in running a race. I also watch many individuals stretch wrong and puts their joints in positions that do more injury than anything else. I would once again look for information in the American Journal of Sport Medicine. BTW I have scoliosis of the spine and my daily regiment of stretching has given me a chance at being a good athlete and gymnast. I have a very supple spine even though the vertebra are skewed. A big note: Be very careful stretching the knee joint it often leads to tearing the acl or meniscus. There are many good sport medicine journals you can also read some of them Online. ;-)
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    Feb 19, 2009 10:32 PM GMT
    Stretch after your workouts, cardio, etc. You're best to do it when you're most "pliable".

    Stretching before a workout doesn't do you a whole lot of good: you can't stretch very far, you end up losing strength, and you actually increase your risk of injury.
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    Feb 19, 2009 10:34 PM GMT
    flex89 saidStretch after your workouts, cardio, etc. You're best to do it when you're most "pliable".

    Stretching before a workout doesn't do you a whole lot of good: you can't stretch very far, you end up losing strength, and you actually increase your risk of injury.


    Oh, well now I just feel stupid
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    Feb 19, 2009 10:36 PM GMT
    never
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    Mar 09, 2009 10:14 PM GMT
    every morning i stretch and before bed. everytime i'm tired i do stretching also to relax my muscles. mainly before every activity that involves movements too.icon_surprised.gif
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    Mar 09, 2009 11:55 PM GMT
    I consider the pillars of fitness to be strength, flexibility, endurance, balance and cardiovascular. I try to do exercises for each of these spread out through the week. I used to stretch right before exercising because that's the way it was always done. Recently exercise physiologists have found that static stretching before exercise weakens the muscles. It is better to stretch after exercise. Before exercise it is better to do light exercise to warm up the muscles to prevent injury. I do a few minutes of Pilates and Yoga three times a week at home. At the gym I do resistance and cardio exercises followed by some simple stretching.....Stretching becomes very important as one ages because the tendons shorten with time. No one wants to become the stiff old man...

    Here is the article from the New York Times about stretching
    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/02/sports/playmagazine/112pewarm.html?_r=1