Are you tired of feeling restricted in your daily movements due to lack of leg flexibility? Do you want to be able to touch your toes without groaning like a grandpa? Look no further! Here, we will share tips and exercises on how to increase leg flexibility. Get ready to stretch your limits!
Importance of Flexibility
Before we get started on the nitty-gritty details, let’s first discuss the importance of having flexible legs . Being flexible can improve posture, reduce the risk of injury, decrease muscle soreness and tension and even enhance athletic performance. As we age, our muscles naturally get less elastic if they are not stretched regularly. Therefore stretching helps maintain mobility as we grow older.
Q&A: Why is it important?
Q: What happens when I don’t stretch my legs?
A: If you don’t stretch regularly, your muscles become stiff which leads to reduced mobility and poor balance.
Tips To Keep In Mind
Before jumping straight into doing some stretches or workouts, here are some useful tips and guidelines that will help maximize the benefits:
1. Warm-up Before Stretching
Always warm up before stretching by doing light cardio activities such as jogging or cycling. This increases blood flow circulation in your body which makes stretching easier.
2. Proper Technique
Focus on proper technique while doing any exercise/stretching routines because incorrect form can cause more harm than good.
Q: Can I injure myself while stretching?
A: Yes. Hence always remember proper technique is key!
3. Hold The Stretch For A Sufficient Duration
Hold each stretch for around 30 seconds at least because holding beyond this time frame has been shown to produce diminishing returns in terms of benefitting flexibility.
While stretching, always try to maintain normal breathing and avoid holding your breath.
5. Progress Gradually
Stretching will take time and patience. Increase the intensity of stretches gradually, or else you might injure yourself if you overdo it in the beginning.
Exercises To Improve Flexibility
This stretch is great for opening up leg muscles that can become tight due to sitting/standing for extended periods of time – mainly targeting quadriceps area and hip flexors
- Start by kneeling on a mat/floor with both knees on the ground.
- Bend one limb at the knee keeping your foot flatly pressed against the surface as shown in figure.
- Use your hand opposite leg which is stretched out forward to balance/support while raising the foot of bent knee with other hand such that heel moves towards upward side.
- Hold this position for acount of 20 seconds feeling tension in front portion & top portion
- Go back to initial step no#2 starting again with other leg.
You may also add a twisting motion by placing elbows inside respective calves while holding each position.
Tip: For a more intensive Quad stretch, hold onto the ankle with the arm on the side of your body.
This is another effective exercise to improve hip flexibility and leg stretches. It targets adductors or inner thigh muscles.
- Sit on the floor/mat, keeping legs straight in front.
- Open both legs apart spacing as much distance between toes as possible, keeping soles facing upward.
- Leans towards forward taking support of arms & folding stomach downwards till full length
- Hold this position for about 30 seconds and then relax.
- Repeat steps while ensuring that you don’t force too much as doing so can hamper initial planned results;
Standing Hamstring Stretch
The standing hamstring stretch is great for all-around leg fitness routine and it will help to loosen tight hamstring muscles.
- Stand straight with feet hip-width apart.
- Extend left foot out in front of you and sit back on right heel.
- Bend from hips directly over your right leg, keeping chest lifted and bring your head toward the knee.
- Extend hands down to either side of the leg as well.
- Hold this position for 30 seconds or deep breaths.
- Repeat steps on other side.
Tip: Flexing toes can engage calf muscles and provide secondary tension relief.
This yoga pose is a great workout if you want to increase flexibility in your glutes, adductors, hips, lower back and legs
- Begin by sitting on the ground, bring your right knee forward in line with your right hand and let it rest alongside by foot.
- Extend left leg straight back behind you
- Gently walk hands toward body folding and lowering torso towards thigh stopping where comfortable and seems stretching thus holding in that position for 30 seconds or deep breaths. .
- Repeat this process on alternate side.
The runner’s lunge stretch targets hamstring muscles, hip flexors, glutes, lumbsacral area.
- Start with a low lunge position by stepping into a forward-facing high lunge.
- Place your hands on the inside of your foot’s instep or flat palms to show forearm support.
- Straighten out the leg that’s behind as much as possible crushing thighs and hip in this motion until you find comfortable tension. .
- Hold this position for 30 seconds then repeat on alternate leg.
Limbering up is not just an athletic exercise that benefits athletes, it’s important for everyone who wants to maintain their mobility and posture. Following these simple stretches at home can ease muscle stiffness, increase flexibility and prevent injuries in daily activities. Maintain a regular routine, so stretching can become a healthy habit too! Remember – flexibility won’t happen overnight but will surely reward frequently practicing folks with unexpected commendations. Developing flexibility belongs to self development since nobody else can make you do these exercises – you’re all alone in this journey towards better health awareness via stretching!
So. . . why wait? Turn off Netflix, grab a mat/floor like shown above, limber up those legs and GO CRUNCH WITH FRESHNESS & FITNESS!