Stretching Exercises

Stretching Exercises

stretching exercise

Stretching Exercises should be included in every health and fitness routine. In fact, stretching exercises should be performed prior to, and after, every workout.

Performing a stretching routine prior to exercising warms up the body and reduces the probability of injury. This is partly due to the fact that stretching exercises increase joint, muscle, ligament, and tendon flexibility. By doing so, the body is warmed up (blood and oxygen flow to all soft tissue) and better prepared to perform the fitness workout that les ahead. Typical pre-workout stretching routines average approximately 5 to 10 minutes, with each stretching exercise being held for 15 to 30 seconds.

Post-workout stretching routines minimize muscle tightness, improve flexibility, and cool the body down slowly. Stretching routines that are performed after a workout allow the joints, muscles, ligaments, and tendons to stretch even further than prior to the workout.

Typical post-workout stretching routines average approximately 5 to 15 minutes, with each stretching exercise being held for 30 to 60 seconds. While performing the various stretching exercises it is important to remember to breathe normally during the stretch and avoid holding your breath. Concentrate on the specifics of each stretch and your breathing while relaxing into the stretch. Each stretch should provide a feeling of moderate tension and should not create a high level of discomfort. In addition, avoid bouncing while performing each stretching exercise.

One of the benefits associated with stretching exercises is that they can be performed virtually anywhere, at any time, and in a short period of time. Additional benefits include calming and relaxing the mind and the body, creates a sense of inner peace and mental well-being, elongates the muscles, ligaments, and tendons, improves joint flexibility and range of motion, reduces the probability of injuries, increases blood flow throughout the body, improves balance and coordination, improves posture, and reduces stress.

Below you will find all of the stretching exercises categorized by muscle group. Simply locate the specific muscle group that you wish to exercise using stretching exercises and a list of all exercises under the specific muscle group will be displayed. Each specific exercise will list the required equipment that is necessary to perform the exercise, the benefits of the exercise, the typical number of sets and repetitions for the exercise, and a step-by-step set of instructions on how to correctly perform the exercise. All of the exercises under this section are stretching exercises.

Abdominals Exercises

Abdominals Stretch

This exercise focuses on stretching the abdominal and lower back muscles. This exercise is performed without the use of any equipment, although, a floor mat is recommended. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Abs Active

This exercise stretches the abdominal and lower back muscles. This exercise does not require the use of any equipment and is easy to perform. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Abs Passive

This exercise stretches the entire abdominal area and the lower back muscles and is fairly easy to perform. This exercise requires the use of an exercise ball to perform. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Back Exercises

Back Active

This exercise is easy to perform and stretches the lower and middle muscles of the back. No equipment is required to perform this exercise. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Back Passive

This exercise focuses on stretching the muscles of the upper back and the neck and is easy to perform. This exercise required no equipment to perform. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Cat Stretch

This exercise targets stretching the muscles of the entire back area and is easy to perform. This exercise is performed without the use of any equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Lower Back Stretch

This exercise focuses on stretching the lower back muscles and is moderately easy to perform. This exercise is performed without the need of any equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Lower Back Twist

This exercise focuses on stretching the lower back muscles and the hips and is easy to perform. This exercise requires no equipment to perform. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Spinal Twist

This exercise is designed to stretch the lower back and requires no equipment to perform. This exercise is easy to perform and will stretch the hips as well. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Standing Cat Stretch

This exercise focuses on stretching all muscles of the back and the hamstrings. This exercise is easy to perform and requires no equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Biceps Exercises

Kneeling Biceps Stretch

This exercise stretches the biceps and forearm muscles and increases the range of motion of the wrist joint. This exercise is easy to perform and requires no equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Calf Exercises

Calf Stretch

This exercise focuses on stretching the calf muscles, one at a time. This exercise is easy to perform and can be completed without the use of equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Hands Down Calf Stretch

This exercise is intended to individually stretch each calf muscle, one at a time. This exercise requires no equipment and is easy to perform. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Standing Calf Stretch

This exercise stretches one calf at a time and is easy to perform. This exercise requires a sturdy structural wall to provide support when performing the exercise. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Chest Exercises

Behind Back Chest Stretch

This exercise focuses on stretching the entire chest area and the shoulders as well. This exercise requires no equipment and is easy to perform. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

T Stretch

This exercise is easy to perform and is designed to stretch the muscles of the chest. This exercise requires no equipment to perform. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Forearms Exercises

Palms Up Forearms Stretch

This exercise is easy to perform and stretches one forearm at a time. This exercise requires no equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Gluteals/Hips Exercises

Gluteals Stretch

This exercise stretches the gluteals, hips, and lower back one side at a time. This exercise is performed without the use of equipment and is easy to perform. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Hip Flexor

This exercise focuses on stretching the muscles of the gluteals and hip areas and is easy to perform. This exercise is performed without the use of any equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Hip Flexors Active

This exercise stretches both the hip and gluteal muscles and is easy to perform. This exercise requires no equipment to complete. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Hip Stretch

This exercise is designed to stretch the hips, gluteals, and quadriceps one side at a time. This exercise is easy to perform and requires no equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Lying Hip Stretch

This exercise is moderately easy to perform and focuses on stretching the gluteals, hips, and lower back. This exercise is easy to perform and requires no equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Prone Hip Stretch

This exercise stretches the gluteals, hips, and quadriceps muscles and is easy to perform. No equipment, other than a floor mat is required. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Hamstrings Exercises

Hamstrings Grab

This exercise is intended to stretch the hamstrings and calves muscles one leg at a time and is moderately easy to perform. This exercise reuires no equipment to perform. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Hamstrings Passive

This exercise is easy to perform and stretches the hamstrings muscles. This exercise is performed without the use of any equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Lying One Leg Hamstrings

This exercise is slightly more difficult to perform and stretches the hamstrings muscles of one leg at a time. This exercise is performed without the use of any equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Seated Hurdler Stretch

This exercise focuses on stretching the hamstrings and calf muscles of one leg at a time and the entire back area. This exercise requires no equipment and is easy to perform. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Seated Spread Eagle

This exercise stretches the hamstrings muscles as well as the muscles of the entire back area. This exercise is easy to perform and is completed without nay equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Standing Hamstrings

This exercise is designed to stretch the muscles of the hamstrings, calves, and lower back and is easy to perform. This exercise does not require any equipment to perform. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Inner Thigh Exercises

Seated Inner Thigh

This exercise stretches the groin, hip, and lower back muscles and is easy to perform. This exercise does not require the use of any equipment to complete. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Standing Inner Thigh

This exercise is slightly more difficult to perform and stretches the muscles of the inner thigh, groin, and hips. This exercise requires no equipment and is easy to perform. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

V Stretch

This exercise focuses on stretching the muscles of the inner thighs, hips, groin, and lower back areas. This exercise is easy to perform and requires no equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Neck Exercises

Neck Circle Rolls

This exercise stretches the neck muscles and can be performed virtually anywhere. This exercise is easy to perform and requires no equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Quadriceps Exercises

Lying Side Quadriceps Stretch

This exercise is easy to perform and stretches the quadriceps muscles of one leg at a time. This exercise is performed without the use of any equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Prone Quadriceps Stretch

This exercise focuses on stretching the quadriceps muscles of one leg at a time and is moderately easy to perform. This exercise requires no equipment to perform. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Standing Quadriceps Stretch

This exercise designed to stretch the quadriceps muscles and is easy to perform. This exercise is best performed using a sturdy wall structure for balance. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Shoulders Exercises

Cross Body Stretch

This exercise is easy to perform and focuses on stretching the shoulder muscles and joint one arm at a time. This exercise is performed without the use of equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Kneeling Reach

This exercise is designed to stretch the shoulder, gluteal, and lower back muscles and is easy to perform. This exercise requires no equipment to perform. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Rear Body Reach

This exercise focuses on stretching the shoulder muscles and joint and is easy to perform. This exercise is performed without the use of any equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Triceps Exercises

Triceps Stretch

This exercise stretches the triceps muscles of one arm at a time and is easy to perform. This exercise requires no equipment to perform. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Waist Exercises

Seated Torso Reach

This exercise stretches one side of the waist/torso area at a time and requires no equipment to perform. This exercise is easy to perform. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Seated Trunk Twist

This exercise is designed to stretch the waist/torso, hips, and gluteals, one side of the body at a time. This exercise is easy to perform and requires no equipment. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

Standing Torso Reach

This exercise focuses on stretching one side of the waist/torso area at a time and is easy to perform. This exercise requires no equipment to perform. Recommended frequency: this exercise can be performed daily.

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