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Tuesday Training Tip - Stretch It Out!
Today's training tip is STRETCHING. We all know that stretching after running is very important. It helps to stretch out those muscles you used while running, it makes you more flexible, and it extends your range of motion. But did you know that stretching BEFORE running can be just as important?
In a recent Shape Magazine article, According to Michele Olson, Ph.D., professor of exercise science at Auburn University Montgomery,"Static stretching is not the optimal way to warm-up before you run," Olson says. Believe it or not, you could actually strain your muscles with static stretching, and it might even slow you down. Instead, focus on getting oxygen to your muscles and warm them up—literally.
So what is the difference between Dynamic and Static stretching?
Dynamic stretching, or stretching that involves momentum and active muscular effort, is very important for runners. Moving stretches help prepare your muscles and can loosen up your hips. It’s also a good way to really focus on your running form before you set out on those miles. These stretches don’t involve just your legs, but also your shoulders, arms, and upper body.
Static stretching is a stretch that is held in a challenging but comfortable position for a period of time. These are the stretches that are usually done after a run to loosen up those legs and keep from getting stiff. But, doing static stretches before a run can possibly lead to muscle strain and may slow you down.
You can find several dynamic and static stretches to start with on Competitor.com. Even adding in a few each time you run can have added benefits.