Stretching is Important but be Careful to Avoid Injury

Stretching should be an essential part of our training routines. It can help us avoid injuries and help our bodies to recover from strain. It can also cause injury if done recklessly or before training. 
Stretching is Important but be Careful to Avoid Injury

Last update: 22 April, 2019

It’s general knowledge that in order to avoid injury you must stretch, but, what about injuries when stretching?  In this article, we’ll discuss possible injuries that can occur while stretching and how to avoid them. Pay close attention!

Stretching consists of a series of movements with the purpose of extending tendons, muscles, and increasing the mobility of the joints. In disciplines like gymnastics, dancing, and swimming, stretching becomes more important. This is due to the need to develop the body’s flexibility.

However, whichever sport or physical activity you practice, stretching is essential to keep your muscles in good condition. At the same time, it favors other exercises by increasing your mobility. In the same way, stretching prevents injuries, but you need to be careful when stretching.

Avoid injury when stretching

There are several injuries that you may suffer when stretching. Among these are tendinitis, muscle or joint hyper stretching, rupture of the Achilles tendon. Due to these reasons, you must avoid as much as possible, injuries that may affect your performance.

stretching is important woman stretching

The issue is how to avoid injury when stretching out. There are several factors that on occasions are taken into consideration. Nevertheless, they seem to be the most important to prevent lesions when you stretch out. Make sure you follow these tips:

  • Don’t force the stretching: although when stretching muscles, joints and tendons you need to apply pressure, it’s important not to force too much the execution. You could end up hurting yourself.
  • Breath and relax: if your muscles are tense when stretching it’ll be of no help at all. Besides, you could be risking tearing a muscle. Ideally, your body should be relaxed and your breathing calm and steady to allow oxygen to get to your muscles and stretch out properly.
  • Warm up before you stretch: if your body is cold you increase the odds of injuring yourself when stretching. Warming up before you stretch out is important because your muscles need to be ready to be stretched.
  • Be consistent: stretching should be a regular part of your training. Stretching once in a while has no effect at all. Your muscles and joints will never be flexible if you’re not consistent.
Man stretching

More advice

Stretching exercises can sometimes be complicated and tedious. Nevertheless, it’s really necessary. It’s important for your muscles to receive oxygen after a workout and to stretch to promote growth, strength, and health. Learn about some of the best tips to avoid injuries when stretching out:

  • Don’t stretch because you have to: do it because you want to, pick a yoga stance or listen to music.
  • Finish a complete routine: it’s not important if your routine is long or short, it’s essential it’s concise and covers every one of your muscles. Stretching partially will unbalance your flexibility.
  • Make sure you do everything correctly: a bad execution can lead to an injury. You should always stretch out slowly and carefully. Avoid sudden movements that may dislocate or hurt any joint.
  • Do not exercise an injured muscle: it’s essential to point out that muscles that have suffered any kind of injury should be stretched only until they have healed. Unless the stretching will help the healing process. This would have to be indicated by a professional.
  • A balanced diet and plenty of water: to avoid any type of injury the shape your muscles, ligaments, joints are in will depend on your nutrition. If they’re weak they will be prone to injury. Therefore you must have a well-balanced diet and drink enough water.

Stretching, besides being essential in the world of sports, contributes to keeping your muscles flexible, with oxygen, and improves muscle memory. It allows your body to make many movements. So don’t underestimate stretching, on the contrary, make it a part of you!

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.