Sports Injury Prevention: Stretching Exercises for Athletes
Stretching before and after workouts is essential for athletes, as it prevents injury. Your muscles need time to warm up and cool down so that you don’t overextend them. The more you stretch, the more flexible your muscles will be, which means you can comfortably enjoy your workout. Make sports injury prevention simple with these stretching exercises for athletes.
Lunges are great ways to warm up your muscles before you get moving. Begin by making a forward lunge, where you place one leg in front and bend it at a right angle. Then, lean forward until you feel stretching in the inner thigh of the forward leg.
You’ll also want to do side lunges to further stretch the leg muscles. To do this, stand in a straddle and bend one leg to the side while the other remains straight. Hold your pose for 20 to 30 seconds before alternating to the opposite leg.
To stretch your quads, locate a wall or chair to support yourself, especially if you need assistance with maintaining your balance. Pull one leg behind you toward your glutes and use a hand to hold onto that foot or ankle.
If you have trouble balancing and have nothing to hold onto, try to focus on a fixed object while holding out the opposite arm in front of you. So if you’re stretching your right leg, extend your left arm.
Side straddles are another great way to stretch your leg muscles. Sit on the floor, spread your legs out, and then lean into your knee on the side you want to stretch first. Your chin should reach toward your knee, but they don’t have to touch if this feels straining. With time, you’ll be able to hold your ankle or the sole of your foot during this stretch.
Tips for Stretching Correctly
By noting these stretching exercises for athletes, you’ll lessen your chance of injury. When you stretch, remember to take things slowly; if a pose feels uncomfortable, relax a little. There’s no need to overextend yourself; flexibility builds over time. Although some of these exercises may be challenging at first, they’ll gradually become easier.
As you stretch, remember to hold each pose for 20 to 30 seconds before changing arms or legs. This allows you to hold each pose for an amount of time that’s comfortable and that still gives your muscles the necessary warm-up. Spend 5 to 10 minutes going through various stretches before and after exercising to keep your muscles healthy.
ProAm Sports Medicine is a sports medicine facility in Las Vegas. Whether you need sports injury treatment, physical therapy, orthopedic surgery, or other athletic assistance, our specialists can provide you with the care you need. With help from an expert, patience, and proper care for your body, you’ll be back to sports in no time!