Los Angeles, CA -- (SBWIRE) -- 12/13/2013 -- If routine workouts featuring cardio and strength training have made a body feel stronger and more fit, but the physique or weight loss goals have hit a plateau, it may be time to add in more stretching to a workout regimen. Not specifically static stretches, where one sits and holds the pose for 15-30 seconds, but dynamic stretching exercises before and after a workout to increase muscle flexibility, tone, and overall strength throughout the body.
Dynamic stretching routines can be done before or after a cardiovascular or weight training workout, and should take no longer than 10-15 minutes to complete. Aside from easing muscle soreness and increasing overall stamina and strength, the exercises also improve cardiovascular function and muscle performance.
Dynamic stretches are meant to be engaging and full of more movement than static ones. A few examples of stretches include Monster Walks, where the person stands with feet hip-width apart and kicks one leg up to meet the opposite arm as they walk forward. The goal is to touch the toes with the leg straight, but work up to that to prevent over stretching.
Another stretch is referred to as a Spiderman, where a person drops into a push-up position and lunges one leg forward until the foot is outside of the hand. The hands then walk back slightly to straighten the legs, before moving forward into the lunge pose again and switching sides.
These are just two examples of dynamic stretching exercises that can be easily added into any workout routine. The key is consistency – once the exercises have been added, keep pushing the body if the stretches become “easier” as one would any other type of workout. Many examples of dynamic stretches can be found online, or in various types of workout programs.
Adding the key element of flexibility to a workout regimen can help overcome plateaus and improve overall levels of muscle strength and endurance, as well as cardiovascular fitness.
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