Your muscles are connected to bones by tendons. When you contract your muscles the tendon moves the bone through the available range of motion. If your muscles are “tight” or “inflexible” you cannot move through the full available range and extra stress is applied to your joint surfaces. This is one factor that can lead to degenerative joint disease, as well as putting you at risk for muscular or ligament injury.
At King Physical Therapy & Fitness we can educate you on performing proper stretching activities to help improve your muscle performance and help you function at your optimal level. Stretches ideally should be performed when muscles are “warmed-up” as well as following a longer period of movement. The stretch should not cause pain and should be held and not oscillated. The amount of time to hold each stretch is based on tolerance. We recommend 3 to 5 sets for a 15 to 30 second hold. Before beginning any exercise program please consult your physician.
P.S. Be sure to continue normal breathing during hold and relax phases of stretching.