There is nothing like a good stretch after sitting in the office chair working away in the office for hours, but do your really know the true benefits of regular stretching? Most people treat stretching as an after thought, that is until we feel that tension coming on. Others will view stretching as just yoga practice which by the wat is a wonderful way to clear the mind.
However, one does not have to join a yoga class to reap the benefits of stretching. Just implementing a stretching routine can enhance your workout, improve the quality of sleep, increase the blood circulation. It also goes beyond the physical benefits by building mental toughness by releasing pent up emotions which I will explain in a moment.
Stretching greatly reduces the risk of injury prior to physical activity. It helps improve our range of motion when playing sports. It also can have a great effect on how we perform. Just imagine a football player who needs to shift on the fly. If they had great flexibility they would be able to get into position more easily and swiftly compared to someone who lacked flexibility. This can be said of a runner, he or she would increase their stride length, giving them the edge over their competitors.
When we get stressed our muscles naturally tense up. In other words, our emotions get pent up in our muscles therefore they need to be released. Stretching and self-massage can do wonders in releasing these pent-up emotions. This makes stretching a valuable effective way to relieve stress
Our posture tells a lot about our mental health. When a person is depressed they drop their head and slouch their shoulders forward, and when they are happy they stand tall, shoulders upright, looking straight ahead. Stretching can help improve posture by reducing muscle stiffness and soreness.
Mental toughness is about mastering your emotions. When you control your emotions, your mind become clear of negative thoughts which many hamper your performance both as an athlete and entrepreneur. Both professions require the ability to solve a series of challenging problems. When one is easy distracted their focus is on how bad the problem is rather than looking for possible solutions.
Stretching helps relax the body and forces one to practice proper breathing, reducing stress leading to better decision making.
So take a few minutes out of your busy day to make stretching a daily ritual. Your health and performance will thank you for it!