Ought to You Stretch Earlier than Working?

You jump out of bed, put on shorts and a shirt, lace up your running shoes and go to the front door. You are ready to go on the trails and drive a few kilometers. But should you stretch yourself first?

You've probably heard that stretching before physical activity is good to prevent injury, and that may be true, but there has been debate about whether you should stretch before running.

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According to a 2014 study, static stretching - stretching when you hold a single immobile position for 10 to 20 seconds - can actually have a negative impact on your strength and strength. This is most important for sprinters, but other studies have found that stretching before running can also affect the running economy for distance runners, and there is no concrete evidence that it can reduce muscle soreness or delayed onset DOMS.

You should think beyond the right equipment when it comes to running preparation. Photo: Unsplash

"It's helpful to see that the old adage," never stretch a cold muscle, "is true," said Jason Fitzgerald, a certified athletics running coach in the United States and founder and head coach of Strength Running. "And because that's true, you should never stretch statically before a run. Muscles are not flexible and do not respond well to an extension when they are cold." Translation: You could actually do more harm than good.

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However, this does not mean that you should completely write off a route before the trail. Static stretching doesn't offer many advantages, but replace it with dynamic warm-up. "The most effective warm-up is a series of dynamic agility exercises, also known as dynamic stretching," says Fitzgerald.

And it is beneficial for many reasons - the most important one is that it literally warms you up. “This type of routine increases your heart rate, breathing, sweat, and metabolic pathways that stimulate you to run. It also improves your freedom of movement, lubricates the joints and opens small capillaries in the extremities to promote blood circulation - all the great things that a proper warm up should do. "

Stretch before runningGet moving before you get on the trail. Photo: Clem Onojeghuo / Unsplash

This also applies if you run a short distance. Fitzgerald explains that despite mileage, it is always an advantage to warm up. "It will help you feel better, perform better, and reduce your risk of injury," he says.

A dynamic warm-up can consist of various elements, including running exercises, light strength exercises and mobility work.

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We asked Fitzgerald for an example and he suggested the Mattock Dynamic warm-up routine, which includes squats, lunges, leg swings, high knee jumps, and more. Try it out before your next run.

"Runners are not gymnasts," says Fitzgerald. "We don't have to be super loose and flexible. We actually need stiffness - high isometric strength or not" firm "- to promote an economical shape and faster racing times."

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