Most bodybuilders neglect stretching in their training program, without knowing that a flexible body is an essential requirement for proper development of the muscles.
Proper stretching has numerous benefits on the body:
–Increased flexibility and range of motion of the joints.Greater flexibility can improve your performance and reduce the risk of injuries.
–Improved circulation. Stretching increases blood flow to your muscles.More blood flowing to your muscles brings nourishment and gets rid of waste byproducts in the muscle tissue.For this reason, stretching after workout is highly recommended, since the nutrient rich blood can easily reach the worked muscle so it can recover and start growing.
–Stretching makes you bigger and more powerful by increasing the length of your muscles.
–Better body posture. Frequent stretching can help keep your muscles from getting tight, allowing you to maintain proper posture.
–Stretching reduces muscle and joint tensions and helps the healing process of injured or overtrained body parts.
–Stress relief. Stretching relaxes tense muscles that often accompany stress.
Stretching can be performed either after the warm-up, after your workout, or between sets while in the middle of the workout. Stretching should never be performed while the muscles are cold. Stretching between sets allows more fresh blood to access the muscle that is worked, reducing the lactic acid buildup and giving you more power for the next set. You can do more thorough stretching after the training session, as this will help muscle growth.
As with all exercises, it’s important to stretch properly or otherwise you are risking a injury. Never force a stretch or go past the point of discomfort or pain.Do not force yourself or bounce – this can cause tendon or ligament injury.